What is the e-mail address of the DPjudge?
This DPjudge (USDP) responds to e-mail sent to
If I send an e-mail to the DPjudge, what commands may I include in that e-mail?
The DPjudge recognizes only the following forty commands:
Hey, you said there were forty recognized commands!
That's only twenty-one!
Okay, you're right. I left out the nineteen "Master commands"
(those that may be used only by a game's Master). These are:
There; that makes forty. That's it. If you are familiar with the Ken Lowe Internet judge, you know that it supports a few more commands. The DPjudge does not support these. Limit your messages to the commands listed above or the DPjudge will simply tell you it does not understand you.
Note that if a specific RULE
(PLAYER_DEADLINES) is used in a game, the
command may be used by persons other than the Master.
Will some of the other Ken Lowe judge commands be supported
SET DRAW and TERMINATE almost
certainly will be (someday) -- as
for any other commands, though, don't hold your breath. I don't
really see much of a need for them.
Here is a list of the capabilities provided by the E-Mail and the Web interfaces:
·Changing WAIT Status
·Changing the Game State
·Obtaining a Phase HISTORY
·Obtaining a Game SUMMARY
·Obtaining a Game MAP
·Obtaining a Game LIST
·Creating a Game
·Taking a Role in a Game
(Joining, Taking Over)
·Modifying Player Data
(e-mail address, password)
·Resigning From a Game
·Changing WAIT Status
·Changing the Game State
·Viewing Phase HISTORY
·Viewing a Completed Game's SUMMARY
·Viewing a Game MAP
·Voting on Draw or Concession
(like you're doing now)
·All Other Activities Not Listed
Does upper- and lower-case ever matter in any command?
|How to get a list of games and information on a specific game|
How can I get a list of games I can play?
It's as easy as sending a one-word e-mail to the DPjudge. That word is LIST. This request must be made when not signed on to a particular game, and in response you will get a list of all
games on the DPjudge that are open to the public and are either forming or
waiting for replacement players. This list is short and contains very few
details about each game. To get more information on a particular game, either
go visit the game's Webpage (which the LIST response will give
you) or, to get the information by e-mail, ask the next question....
How do I find out about a game via e-mail?
This is also done by using the LIST command. You can either ask for the status of a specific game to be sent to you by putting:
or request the status of a game you have already signed on to (in the current e-mail message) by simply saying:
Note that if you are signed on to a particular game, you may not request a list for any game other than that one.
That seems to give me only the up-to-date unit positions and game conditions. Can I get historical information? How about the e-mail addresses of the players involved?
You're asking about the SUMMARY command. Ask for a game's SUMMARY the same way you ask for a LIST of a specific game. The return e-mail will contain the historical ownership of supply centers, records of when each power was taken over by replacement players, and so forth. As for player e-mail addresses, it is the hard-and-fast policy of the DPjudge to keep all e-mail addresses secret until the end of the game -- only a SUMMARY of a completed game will contain player e-mail addresses.
How about the complete history of the moves of a game? Can I request that?
Sure. Just use the HISTORY command. It has the same syntax as the SUMMARY command, and it returns you, in a single e-mail, and listed in order, all of the phase results for the game.
The maps I can see on the Website are pretty handy. Can I get
them sent to me in e-mail?
Yes, you can. Just use the MAP command.
It has the same syntax as the SUMMARY command,
and it returns you, as an e-mail attachment, the .gif
map displaying the current positions in the game. If you add
ps or pdf to the end of your MAP command,
you will be sent the PostScript or Adobe PDF file (respectively)
instead of the gif file.
Okay, let's talk about the different commands. Mind if we take that weird one first? What do you mean by the "(etc.)" on the OBSERVE command? What kind of command is that?
OBSERVE is just one form of a command you use to join a game as something other than a "map-power." (A "map-power" is a player that will own supply centers and units. You join as a "map-power" using the JOIN command, which we'll get to in a minute.) Joining as an Observer will allow you to send press, but take no other part in the game. Now I hear you asking, "Other than a map power or an observer, what else can I be?" Well, other than OBSERVER, there is MONITOR, but after that, there's no single answer, because some games also support various different types of non-map powers (such as the Exchange variant's INVESTOR players.)
What's the difference between a MONITOR and an OBSERVER?
A MONITOR receives only the game's results (and deadline change notices, and draw or concession agreements). An OBSERVER is eligible to send and receive press messages. Also, an OBSERVER shows up on the Web as someone who can "Log In," while a MONITOR does not. Additionally, a MONITOR is not required or expected to be a member of the DPjudge Player Database (DPPD) -- that is, the e-mail address does not need to identify any particular person. MONITORs can therefore be used to update any automatic game-mapping and tracking sites (such as One Site).
Okay, I think I understand. JOIN is for recognized powers (specific nations that can
own units and supply centers) in a game, and OBSERVE and similar commands are for everyone else.
You're a sharp one; yes, you got the right idea. The DPjudge assigns an identity to you when you participate in a game. You can be a map-power (either one of your choosing -- from among those map-powers still available -- or assigned to you randomly at game start) via the JOIN command. You can be a named observer (each observer has a unique name), in which case you specify your name when you enter the game using the OBSERVE command. Or you can be another recognized entity of a type specific to certain variant games. One such example is an investor, which is a recognized entity in the exchange variant. You join a game as an investor via the INVEST command. There are others, but you get the idea.
Okay. I understand what you mean now. But how exactly do I use the JOIN and OBSERVE (and similar) command to get me into a game?
To join the game as a map-power player, use the JOIN command. We'll discuss JOIN later, though. Let's finish covering OBSERVE and its friends.
To join a game as a non-map-power, you use a command with the following format:
playerType createYourName@gameName password
where playerType is (the first few letters, at least, of) the type of non-map power you wish to become. For example, you could use OBSERVE or OBSERVER or OBS to become an observer, and you could use INVESTOR or INVEST or INV to become an investor.
createYourName can be any name of your choosing (except stuff like MASTER or M or the names or initial letters of the map-powers, or any other player ID that is already spoken for). After the at-sign must be the name of the game you wish to join. And don't forget capitalization doesn't ever matter.
password is a password of your choosing. You will need it to SIGNON to the game. Additionally, if you wish to change your playerType for any reason (for example, if you had joined the game as an OBSERVER but now wish to become a map-power by using the JOIN or TAKEOVER command), you will need to use this password in the command that you use to make the change.
Note that the GameMaster will have access to your
password, so you may not wish to use the same password that you use
to log into the DPPD or that you use on other accounts.
As you can see, then, the DPjudge uniquely identifies each OBSERVER. Contrast this with the Ken Lowe judge, in which each observer uses the same SIGNON Ogamename command. Here at the DPjudge, to interact with a game once you have joined it, you still use SIGNON command but the O is replaced by the player's chosen "ID" and an at-sign. (See the discussion of the SIGNON command below for more details.)
Here are a couple examples of the "join but not as a map-power" command:
OBSERVE loudMouth@coolgame myPassword
MONITOR nosyParker@yourGame peeping
INVEST DonTrump@monopoly iam_rich
At present, Observers, Monitors, and Investors are the only known type of non-map-power, but in the future, there will be more. You cannot just make one up, though. That is,
SPY SpysAreUs@coolgame myPassword
is neat, but will simply return you an error because the DPjudge doesn't know what a SPY is. (However, if you ask your GameMaster to add the line ALLOW SPY to the game's "status" file, then you can indeed become a SPY by sending in the line shown above. Unless the DPjudge is taught otherwise, though, a SPY is just another name for an observer.)
Cool!!! So I can name myself as an observer! What happens if I sign on using the syntax that an observer would send to the Ken Lowe judge? That is, by saying
"SIGNON OgameName password"?
It won't work, since this is syntax that is not recognized by the DPjudge. The only way you can signon as a non-map-power is to use the SIGNON yourCreatedName@gameName password version (the SIGNON command is discussed more completely below). The closest you can come to the Ken Lowe syntax is to use the single letter O as the name you create for yourself in the OBSERVE command. You would still need to SIGNON with an at-sign (the command would be SIGNON O@gameName password) and you will be the only person that will be allowed to have the name "O". If someone else tries to SIGNON as "O" they'll probably fail because they won't get your password right.
Fine. Now I know how to join the game if I don't want to be a map-power. But I want to play! How do I join a game as a map-power?
You'll use the JOIN command, which has the following syntax:
JOIN gameName password
JOIN [powerName@]gameName password
If the game is a private game,
you will need to add one more word to the end of your JOIN
command. This is the game's "privacy password," which you must obtain
from the GameMaster. Is is in this way that games can allow access
only to a specific invited group of players.
Note that, unlike the OBSERVE (and other non-map-power) game-entrance commands discussed above, the second word to the JOIN command does not need to contain a "player ID" and the game name -- it might simply be the game name.
When you JOIN a game without specifying a powerName, you will be automatically assigned a player ID of POWER#1 or POWER#2, etc., etc. This player ID will be sent back to you in the response to your JOIN command. Yes, POWER#6 is kind of boring as a player ID, but it's only temporary (when the game starts, you get to be something special and exciting like AUSTRIA).
If you want to send press or (God forbid!) RESIGN before the game starts, you will need to know your player ID (POWER#1, etc.) to use it in the SIGNON or RESIGN command (each of which is discussed below).
As soon as enough players have JOINed, the game will begin and you will be notified which power you will play. Power assignment is completely random unless you selected a powerName in your JOIN command. (That is, there is no such thing as a "preference list" such as is supported by the Ken Lowe judge).
If you specify a powerName when JOINing a game (which you can only do if a specific "rule" is in effect for the game), you will play that particular power when the game starts. Note that you must spell out the entire name of the power (that is, you may not abbreviate "Italy" as "I", etc.) and you must use the at-sign to separate your chosen powerName from the gameName. If the powerName you specify is already spoken for, you will be told this in response, and you will not have JOINed the game.
You cannot JOIN a game that has already begun.
Here is an example JOIN command, which will result in your becoming POWER#1 (or POWER#2, etc.) in the game named jigdy:
JOIN jigdy mypassword
Note that the JOIN command is deliberately very different from the Ken Lowe command to join a game (which is SIGNON ?gamename password variantInfo...). At the DPjudge, you do not specify any game variant information when joining a game. At the DPjudge, we assume you know what you're getting yourself into.
Can I both JOIN and OBSERVE? If I were a map-power, could I also enter the game as an observer, perhaps even more than once?
Nope; if your e-mail address is already listed as being associated with some role in the game, you can't do something else. If you have two e-mail addresses to use, though, you could indeed do this, but the game's Master, if he finds out what you've done, won't necessarily like you very much. Also, the only way to pull this off is to create two separate registrations in the DPjudge Player Database, which is cheating and grounds for immediate blacklisting, so don't even try it.
Once you are a map-power, you cannot assume any other role. The only way out is to RESIGN (and again, the game's Master might not like you too much). On the other hand, non-map-powers can change their playerType whenever they wish (for example, an observer could send an INVEST command to become an investor or a JOIN or TAKEOVER command to become a map-power).
|How to sign on after having joined|
What is the syntax of the SIGNON command?
The SIGNON command must contain exactly three space-separated words.
The first word, of course, is SIGNON.
The second word is used to specify both the power and the game name. This is done in one of two ways:
- If signing on as a "map-power" (that is, a player that is eligible to own units) or as the Master, the initial letter of the power name can be given, followed immediately by the game name. For example, the command
SIGNON Ajigdy password
will signon to the game jigdy as the map-power which begins with "A" (Austria, assuming the game jigdy uses the standard map). If the game has not yet started, and your player ID is something like POWER#3, you can either use the second SIGNON method (described below), or you can use your power number to SIGNON using this first method:
SIGNON 3jigdy password
- Whether a "map-power" or not, an alternate form of the SIGNON can be used. To signon this alternate way, give the full name of the power as which you intend to SIGNON, followed immediately by an at-sign (@) and the game name. For example, the command
SIGNON austria@jigdy password
is identical to the earlier example.
- This second method must be used to signon as an observer or other type of non-map-power.
The third word must be either the player's password or the Master's password.
|How to check, submit, and clear orders|
Can I submit orders via e-mail?
Yes. You can submit movement, retreat, and adjustment phase orders by e-mail. Simply list the orders somewhere in your e-mail (after a SIGNON and not within a press message). Orders must be completely submitted. Everything you had on-file before will be thrown out and the orders in your e-mail used to replace them.
How do I clear my orders via e-mail?
Easy. Just send a CLEAR command (after a SIGNON).
Can I check what my current orders are by e-mail?
You sure can. Just send a STATUS command (after a SIGNON).
Okay, I've joined a game and I know how to SIGNON. It looks like the most useful thing I can do using the e-mail interface is send press. So teach me how. What is the syntax for the PRESS and BROADCAST commands?
After the initial word in the command (PRESS or BROADCAST), you may specify one or more of the following four "options."
- No option from the list of four below may be given more than once.
- That is, you may use no more than one of the items from option group 1, no more than one from option group 2, etc.
- TO powerList --or--
+ powerList --or--
This option is used to specify the player or players to which the press will be sent.
- You may not include this option if the command you are writing is BROADCAST
- However, this option is required if the command is PRESS.
Note that although the plus-sign
is recognized as a synonym for TO, the minus sign (which
has a meaning in the Ken Lowe judge's PRESS command) is
not valid; to send a message to everyone except certain parties,
you need to list the receiving players.
- FAKE TO powerList --or--
FAKE + powerList --or--
FAKE +powerList --or--
This option is used to specify the player or players to whom the
press will claim to be addressed. Note that if you
include the Master in the true recipients of the message, he
must be in the FAKE recipients, and vice-versa.
This option may only be used if the game allows
FAKE_PRESS and may only appear after any TO
option (option 1 above) has been given.
- [FAKE] FROM powerName --or--
This option is used to specify the player by whom the press
will claim to have been sent. The GREY (or
GRAY) version of this option indicates the message is
to be sent anonymously. The FROM version allows you
to specify a player (either by full-name or by initial letter if
a map-power) from whom the press will appear to have been
sent. Note that you may not claim that press comes
FROM the Master.
The FROM version of this option may only
be used if the game allows FAKE_PRESS, while GREY
(or GRAY) may only be used if the game allows grey or
This option, if given, indicates that no copy of the press should
be sent ("echoed") to the author.
All lines in the e-mail that occur after a properly-written PRESS
or BROADCAST command will be considered text for the message until
an ENDPRESS, ENDBROADCAST, or SIGNOFF
command is found (or until the end of the e-mail message is reached).
The message will be sent as soon as one of these lines (or the end of
the e-mail message) is reached.
How do I specify a powerList to use in a TO or FAKE TO option?
A powerList is either:
- the full name of a single power
(for map-powers and the Master, the initial letter of the name is
recognized, as is the power number [if a single digit] for unassigned
powers before a game starts). For example:
- F or france or LoudMouthObserver
- the initial letters of any number of map-powers (or numbers of
unassigned powers), one right after
the other. For example:
would mean France, Russia, and Austria, and
would mean Power#1, Power#2, Power#4, and the Master.
- a comma-separated list of the full names of powers.
France,Russia, austria, Master, kibitzer#1
Could you show me some example PRESS
and BROADCAST commands?
Sure I could.
Try these on for size. As these examples show, there are often many different
ways to write the same press command, and not all methods are shown below.
PRESS TO A -or-
PRESS TO AUSTRIA
The simplest possible example of a partial (non-broadcast) press message.
This line begins a press message destined for Austria. As long as the game does
not allow only grey press, you will be identified as the sender of the message.
BROADCAST FROM G -or-
BROADCAST FAKE FROM G
This line begins a broadcast message that will claim to have been sent from Germany.
PRESS TO A FAKE TO AT
This sends press to Austria and makes Austria think
that Turkey got the message as well. Note that because
TO must precede FAKE TO, this
command may not be written as:
PRESS FAKE TO AT TO A
PRESS TO AUSTRIA FAKE BROADCAST -or-
PRESS FAKE BROADCAST TO AUSTRIA
This sends press to Austria and makes Austria think everyone in the
game received it.
BROADCAST FAKE TO AIRE -or-
BROADCAST FAKE TO AUSTRIA,ENGLAND,ITALY,RUSSIA
This line begins a broadcast message that will claim to have been sent only
to Austria, England, Italy, and Russia. Perhaps you are France and
are part of a grand alliance to defeat Turkey, but you are not being
true to the cause -- you are passing
Turkey all of your correspondence with your allies (note that any game
observers will see this press, though, so you should hope they don't tell
your allies what you are doing).
PRESS WHITE TO AF -or-
PRESS TO AF WHITE
Sends press to Austria and France, and you will be identified as the sender.
PRESS GREY TO AF -or-
PRESS GREY TO AUSTRIA, FRANCE -or-
PRESS TO AUSTRIA, FRANCE GREY
Sends press to Austria and France, but they won't know who it came from. In
the press you can write something identifying who you are, but the recipient
will have doubts.
PRESS TO A FAKE FROM G -or-
PRESS TO A FROM G -or-
PRESS FAKE FROM G TO A -or-
PRESS FROM G TO A
Sends press to Austria, and he'll think it came from Germany.
PRESS TO A FAKE TO AR FROM T -or-
PRESS TO A FAKE TO AR FAKE FROM T -or-
PRESS TO A FROM T FAKE TO AR -or-
PRESS TO A FAKE FROM T FAKE TO AR -or-
PRESS FROM T TO A FAKE TO AR -or-
PRESS FAKE FROM T TO A FAKE TO AR
Sends press to Austria, who will be told (falsely) that the message
also went to Russia, and that it came from Turkey.
PRESS WHITE TO A FAKE TO AI
Sends press to Austria, and identifies who you are. Austria will be told
(falsely) that the message also went to Italy.
|Sending illegal types of press|
If my game allows only grey press, do I need
to say GREY?
No. It gets said for you automatically.
If a game is NO_PRESS or PUBLIC_PRESS
press, does the e-mail interface keep me from violating these rules?
Of course it does. For example, only BROADCAST and
PRESS TO MASTER are allowed in a PUBLIC_PRESS
press game. You will be lectured if you try to send any other kind
of press in such a game.
What happens if I try to do something illegal (like
send press faked FROM the Master or send private press in a
game)? Will I crash the DPjudge or will it go through
and do what it can (for example, leaving out the "FAKE FROM M" part)?
Will it alert the Master to someone trying to cheat? Will it botch the press
and let the other powers know who really sent it?
It will send mail back to you saying, "you can't do that" but will tell
no one that you tried. It will not send the press anywhere, but will
return it to you with its politely stated objection to your request.
What is the syntax for the ENDPRESS,
ENDBROADCAST, and SIGNOFF commands?
These three commands have the same syntax. When found as the first
word on a line (not necessarily the only word, but the first
word), any message being composed is terminated and sent
immediately. If the QUIET option was not used, an
echo of the press message will be also be e-mailed to you.
If the command is SIGNOFF, the DPjudge finishes processing
the e-mail message as if nothing else were contained in it from that
Otherwise (if the command is ENDPRESS or ENDBROADCAST),
you may begin another PRESS or BROADCAST
message with your next command.
If you don't put any one of these commands in your
message, then everything you have after your PRESS
(or BROADCAST) command gets sent up to the end of the message.
Which means if you have an automatic signature that gets added to
your outgoing e-mail to let everyone know how to contact you, you
will probably violate gunboat rules. So make sure you have either
ENDPRESS or ENDBROADCAST or SIGNOFF
in your mail, and make sure to spell it correctly!
Is that true? Does ENDBROADCAST stop
PRESS as well? And ENDPRESS can be used to stop a
Yes, to both counts. I thought it was weird too, but the Ken Lowe judge
does it that way so I said, oh okay, whatever.
Other than the lines after my SIGNOFF, is
there any other way I can put lines in my e-mail that will be
Yes. Any line whose
first non-whitespace characters are // will be ignored. This is
true wherever the line appears in the e-mail, even if in the middle of
a press message. This ability to "comment out" lines may be useful to you
if you want to set up an e-mail template containing your commonly used
commands. Each line in your template can be commented out, and you can then
simply remove the leading slashes on the lines you wish to use in the
message to be sent. In this way, you might only need to type the
commands once. For example:
// CREATE mygamename mypassword
// here's the timing line I usually use
// TIMING NEXT 2D AT 12:00 GRACE 3D
SIGNON X@game password
// PRESS TO A
PRESS TO E
|Updating player information|
How do I change my e-mail address so that the
game knows where I now am?
Use the SET ADDRESS command. To do so, simply SIGNON
to the game in an e-mail message and provide a line of the form:
SET ADDRESS [newAddress[,otherAddress]...]
Any Address data that you provide should be a valid e-mail
address. If you do not specify a newAddr, the e-mail
address from which you sent the message will be used. By providing
multiple addresses (joined by commas, with no whitespace between
the addresses, you may direct that the game send all e-mail to
you into more than one mailbox.
How do I change my password?
Use the SET PASSWORD command. To do so, simply SIGNON
to the game in an e-mail message and provide a line of the form:
SET PASSWORD newPassword
It's that simple. This command works whether you are a map power, an
observer or other non-map power, or the Master of the game.
Can I change my "wait flag" via e-mail?
Yep. Just send in a SET WAIT or SET NOWAIT command
after a SIGNON. That's all there is to it.
What if I will be away? Can I tell the game not to set deadlines on
Yes. For this, you would use the SET ABSENCE command.
This command establishes dates on which the game will not set a deadline.
Any player may use the SET ABSENCE command; however, only
the Master may introduce any absence longer than fourteen days. To
set an absence, give a date in the same format as used for deadlines (for
example, 23 JUL 2003 0:00, but this can be abbreviated),
then optionally the word TO and
another date. Deadlines will not be set on any of the days included in
the date range. You may omit the first date (and begin with the word
TO to specify all dates from the current day to the specified
date. Here are some examples:
SET ABSENCE 8 AUG 2003
SET ABSENCE 24 DEC TO 6 JAN
SET ABSENCE TO 13:00
Notice how we shortened each line. You normally won't add the time,
because absences typically span multiple days without a specific
start or end time (midnight is good enough an approximation). Be
aware though that it's midnight in the game's time zone, which
could be significantly different from yours. If that's the case,
add an extra day as a buffer or add a specific time.
We can also drop the year, because you're not likely to set absences
more than a year in advance. Notice that this even works in and
around the New Year, as shown in the Christmas Holiday example.
In fact, you could even drop the months if the absence is set less
than a month in advance. So any day after Nov. 24, you can shorten
this further to
SET ABSENCE 24 TO 6
Short and sweet.
The last example is more likely to be useful for REAL_TIME
games with very short deadlines in the order of 10 minutes, where
you want to take a break for lunch. In that case just enter the
time, not the date, as this could only be today.
Note that the game's current deadline is completely unaffected by a
SET ABSENCE command. To change the current deadline in
any way, you must use the SET DEADLINE command. Note
further that it is possible to set extensive absences by repeated use
of the command. The Master should be vigilant to ensure that the power
to set absences will not be abused by any player. The Master may also
use this command if he or she will be away and does not wish the game
to process during the absence.
|Getting around wireless device restrictions|
I use a wireless device to send my e-mail, and it
does not support my sending a newline character. Is there anything I can
do to be able to send multi-line messages to the DPjudge?
Yes. If you begin a line with two backslash characters (\\),
then the next non-whitespace character on that line (providing it is not
a letter or a number) will serve as a newline character. Here are some
\\: signon Emygame mypasswd:list:signoff
\\\ summary mygame\history mygame
\\; signon Egame passwd;f lon - eng;press to f;This means war!!
Tell me about the RESIGN command.
Well, I'd rather not; but okay, if I must. The thing to remember about it
is that it has the same syntax as the SIGNON command:
RESIGN initialLetterOfPowerNamegameName yourPassword -or-
RESIGN completePowerName@gameName yourPassword
Note that, unlike the Ken Lowe judge, you do not
give the RESIGN command after a SIGNON. Rather,
you give it instead of a SIGNON. You may
send PRESS in this, your final message (get off a parting shot or
offer an apology). Here is an example:
RESIGN austria@theGame myPassword
PRESS TO MASTER
I am resigning now, and since I am conscientious like all
good players should be, I have found a replacement to take
my place. His e-mail address is JoeBlow@somewhere.com.
and I've already told him to send in a TAKEOVER command.
Goodbye, cruel world.
Note that if there is any problem with your e-mail message,
anywhere in it, you will not be RESIGNed. For
if you misspell PRESS in the above example, you will still be
playing Austria until you RESIGN in a perfect e-mail message.
If you do successfully RESIGN, this will be reported to you
in the response to your e-mail.
One final thing. The Master may never RESIGN. If he needs
to leave the game for any reason, he must find a replacement for himself
and serve until that replacement issues a TAKEOVER command.
|How to take over a vacant position|
I think I can guess what the TAKEOVER command
does, but tell me anyway.
Okay. It allows a kind, much-appreciated soul to become a map-power in
a game that has already started. Which means that one of the map-powers
has taken a powder and left the spot available. The command has the
same syntax as SIGNON and RESIGN:
TAKEOVER initialLetterOfPowerNamegameName yourPassword -or-
TAKEOVER completePowerName@gameName yourPassword
Remember that, like the RESIGN command,
the TAKEOVER command does not follow a SIGNON
command but rather is used instead of a SIGNON command.
It does serve the same purpose as SIGNON, in that it
does sign you on to the game -- that is, you may send press in your
TAKEOVER message. You are only allowed to
TAKEOVER vacant map-powers. Here are the two possible ways
to TAKEOVER an abandoned position as Austria:
TAKEOVER Agamename password
TAKEOVER austria@gamename password
Note that in a private game, the game's privacy password (as supplied
to you by the GameMaster) will need to be given after your personal
password. For example, like this:
TAKEOVER austria@gamename password privacyPassword
Note that the GameMaster will have access to your
password, so you may not wish to use the same password that you use
to log into the DPPD or that you use on other accounts.
The TAKEOVER command is also used to become the new Master of
a game. The password that must be used is the
password of the current Master (who cannot resign his position). The
proper way to hand a game over to a new Master is to locate the willing
replacement Master, give him the game's Master password, and have him
e-mail a "TAKEOVER master@gamename password"
What is the CREATE command?
The CREATE command is used to create a new game and become
its GameMaster. The syntax is as follows:
CREATE gamename password [ruleVariant]
[status file lines]
A gamename may contain only alphabetic
characters (a through z), numeric characters
(0 through 9), and the underbar character.
The recognized ruleVariants are: standard,
payola, and xtalball.
If not provided, the ruleVariant
will default to "standard."
Assuming no game with the given gamename exists,
a new game will be created, and the sender of the message will be
set as the game's Master. If the message contains a line beginning
with the word FORM, the game will be immediately set up to
accept JOIN commands, etc. Otherwise, the game will be put
in preparation mode (in this state, the game is as yet hidden
from the world) and the Master will be told how to access the game's
status file via the Web.
If the message contains a line beginning with the words SET UNLISTED,
only persons knowing the game name will know about the game (it will
not appear in the game lists on the Web, nor in the response to an
e-mailed LIST command or on The Diplomatic Pouch Openings List).
The GM can change this at any time by sending a new message with either
SET LISTED or SET UNLISTED in it.
Lines that appear in the e-mail after the CREATE command
(until any SIGNOFF command is encountered
-- with the
exception of any FORM line) are
put into the game's status file as part of its initial content. The
various lines that are understood are all described in
the status file directive list and in the
description of the DPjudge rule set.
Exceptions are the GAME, MASTER, and PHASE
status file directives, which will be silently ignored -- these cannot
be added to the status file by the CREATE command.
(Masters should become familiar with the status file directives
and the rule set; these are used to govern all of the different game
parameters, including whether to make a game
PRIVATE, so that only invited players may
For example, the following e-mail message:
CREATE mygamename masterPassword
will create a private game (named mygamename)
that will be played on the standard map, that
will have two-day movement phase deadlines, and that will not allow press
but will allow landed fleets to convoy armies.
Additionally, players will be able to specify which power they want to
play (assuming their choice hasn't been spoken for already) when
the game. Finally, the message specifies that the game should be
allowed to form immediately (that is, the Master will not need to
visit the game's Web page to cause formation to begin).
desc A standard game on the standard map.
timing move 2d
Rule no_press coastal_Convoy
Note that any errors in the the lines added to the status file are
reported by the e-mail response. The Master will learn of any such
errors when he visits the game page on the Web.
Once he receives the e-mail reply to the CREATE command,
the Master also has an opportunity to modify the game
status file in any way, altering, deleting, or supplementing any lines
he may have provided beneath the CREATE command.
Again, consult the status file directive list
for details on updating a game status file. By sending extra lines
in the CREATE command and/or modifying the status file using the
Web page, the Master establishes all game parameters and rules, can provide
a description for the game, can set up DUMMY (unplayed) powers,
When the Master decides that the game status file is ready (which could
be immediately -- he might not have needed or chosen to add any lines
to the status file at all), he can move the game out of preparation
mode. This is done by use of a checkbox that appears on the Master's
Webpage. The Master may choose to either "Allow the game to form"
(meaning that the game will accept JOIN and other similar
e-mailed commands) or to "Set the game to active."
This latter option ("Set the game to active") is used only very rarely.
It would be used when
migrating a game in progress to the DPjudge or when otherwise setting up
a position. Before using this option,
the Master would first be sure to add all power and player information,
set the current game PHASE (this is very important), and provide
unit locations and center ownership data in the status file.
If the Master does not change the current
game phase from FORMING and chooses the "Set game to active"
option, the powers in the game will be completely set up as if for the
first turn of the game.
Only if the Master has changed the game PHASE so that it
is no longer FORMING but is instead an actual phase in the
game flow, will the status file (presumably containing non-game-start
unit positions and center ownership, etc.) be left entirely
as-is by the "Set game to active" option. Use of the "Set the game
to active" option requires a careful and attentive Master, who must
completely set up a game status file (including when the next
DEADLINE should fall, etc.).
And PURGE does the opposite?
Indeed, the PURGE command is used to completely remove a game.
Unsurprisingly, its syntax mimics that of the CREATE command:
PURGE gamename password
But there are several restrictions: The game must either be in the preparation phase or forming and no player may have joined yet.
If they did, make them resign. The reason that there are so many restrictions, is that a game, once started, is not the property of the GM, but of all involved. The restrictions are there to protect this shared property from the whims of a single person (the GM).
The normal way to end a game that needs to be ended prematurely, is to set its status to terminated. If you have an absolutely good reason to want to eradicate an active or even finished game, tell that to the judgekeeper and he may decide to honour your request or reject it altogether.
What if I'm not really satisfied with the name of my game and would like to RENAME it?
Then you would use the RENAME command. Its syntax is very similar to the previous commands:
RENAME gamename newgamename password
Avoid as much as possible using this command after the game already started, as players may not notice the name change message until after they entered their new orders, leading to all kinds of unnecessary frustrations.
Can I change the game state?
Yes, you can, by way of the following single word commands: FORM, ACTIVATE, WAIT and TERMINATE.
Any other state, like PREPARATION or COMPLETED, can not be set in this way, but must be reached by the normal game mechanics.
Nor can a completed game be changed to a different state, unless with the assistance of the judgekeeper, who will need a damn good reason to do so.
For a game that already started to go back to the FORMING state, you first need to ROLLBACK to the starting phase. Afterwards you need to explicitly set the state to ACTIVE to get going again, or ROLLFORWARD to the desired phase. All players will still have the same powers assigned to them.
What is the syntax of the SET DEADLINE command?
This command (which sets the current deadline) has the following form:
SET DEADLINE [weekday] [day [month [year]]]
That is, you must at least specify a weekday (either
in full or abbreviated as MON, TUE, etc.) or a
day of the month (from 1 to 31) or a time or any
combination thereof. The DPjudge assumes that you're trying to set a
deadline in the future, so if you omit a certain part it will replace it
with the first appropriate date component following the time of the
message. If you only specify a time, the date will be set either as today or
tomorrow, depending on whether the given time is past or before the
current time, i.e. within the next 24 hours. If only the day
is given, the month is set to either this month (counting
from today onwards) or next month (if smaller than today). If set
the month must be written in full or as an abbreviation, such
as JAN or NOV. Likewise, if the year
(two or four digits) is omitted, it will be set to either the current
year or the next one. But when omitting the time
(hour:minute), this will be set either to the
"AT" parameter from the
TIMING line of the game's status file, or (if the game
has no such timing parameter) to midnight (0:00). A notice will
be broadcast to the game announcing the new deadline.
Note that if a specific RULE (PLAYER_DEADLINES)
is used in a game, the SET DEADLINE command may be used
by persons other than the Master.
What is the PROCESS command?
The PROCESS command will cause the game to immediately process
the current phase. This command can only be performed by the
Master and is recognized if the word PROCESS appears as
the first word of any line outside a press message.
Note that the PROCESS command is only supported through
e-mail, though the Master can achieve the same effect by submitting
the final unsubmitted set of player orders and adjusting the deadline
to cause processing at the next scheduled check.
The one difference between PROCESS at the DPjudge
and PROCESS on the Ken Lowe judge is that the current phase
will not be processed unless all players have submitted
whatever they are required to submit for the phase.
However, the DPjudge will process a game even if all orders
are not yet submitted if an exclamation point is appended to the command,
like this: PROCESS!
If any player
has not submitted orders for a phase when a PROCESS!
command comes to a DPjudge, the judge will go
ahead and process the phase, defaulting anything that is unsubmitted
to HOLDs, WAIVEs, DISBANDs, and REMOVEs
chosen randomly. Without the exclamation point, however, the DPjudge
doesn't get into this business; instead it will simply reply that the
game cannot yet be processed. The Master has access to the file where
all player data is stored, and he can update that data if he needs to do so
before requesting a PROCESS.
Some variant game-phases may not be supported by the DPjudge.
That is, games may list phases (in their FLOW)
that are manually processed by the GameMaster.
When such a game phase is current, the Master must use the
PROCESS command to cause the DPjudge to advance the game to
the next phase. Deadlines are still set for such phases (the Master is
declared late if the game is not instructed to PROCESS before
the deadline is reached).
How about the PREVIEW command?
The PREVIEW command is identical to the PROCESS
command except that the phase results are only "previewed." This
means that the results are sent to the Master (and only to the
Master) via e-mail, and the game map and status file are not modified
(that is, the game is not advanced to the next phase; the current
phase is left unprocessed).
How about the RESIGN command?
The RESIGN command enables the Master to resign a player
from a game. This is identical to if the player had resigned
themselves from the game. Unfortunately, a lot of less experienced
players just stop playing without any notice. This command lets the
Master resign the player or the Master can also "un-dummy" a
dummied player by using this command.
How about the DUMMY command?
The DUMMY command is not meant as a reflection on your playing
abilities. Instead, this allows a Master to set a particular power to
be played by the computer. This is most useful when it is difficult to
find a replacement player for an abandoned power. Sometimes, you do find
someone after the power has already been dummied. You can then use the
RESIGN command to un-dummy the dummied position.
And what if I use the REVIVE command?
In that case the resignation will be undone and the player will regain his
power. This is the same as when the player sends a TAKEOVER mail
for his own power.
You can optionally add a password as a second parameter. If omitted a
random one is created.
In either case the player is informed of the new password in the welcome
back mail. He can later change it with SET PASSWORD.
But what if in the meantime someone else took the spot?
Inform him politely that the original player desires to play on. If he
agrees, you can RESIGN him first, and then REVIVE the
original player. Assuming the game didn't process the turn yet, this
succession of commands should do the trick.
How would I put a game back at a previous phase?
You would do this using the ROLLBACK command. This command
on its own will roll back one processed phase, ignoring any skipped
phases in between. You can also put a phase abbreviation after it --
for example, you might say
When you use the ROLLBACK command, the game will be put
back on that particular phase, all player orders will be cleared,
and a new deadline will be set.
Additional options are:
This restores the orders instead of
resetting them, in general meaning the game is ready to be processed.
This will undo any persistent settings, like game rules or
the game description or even whether a power is a dummy or taken over,
to what they were in the selected phase. Use with caution.
ROLLBACK FULL RESTORE W1904A
will roll back to the Winter 1904 Adjustments, with all build orders
restored and any rule and other persistent changes made after that
Note that this command may only
be used on an active game. That is, once a game is completed,
ROLLBACK is no longer possible. One reason for this is
the fact that once a game has completed, the game summary, indicating
player identities, has been published. Be very careful with the FULL
option, because it might undo power replacements and other changes
that may cause you some headaches. In case of doubts or trouble,
contact the judgekeeper.
What if the game had started prematurely, while I had forgotten a
crucial parameter that influences the game start?
You can rollback to the forming phase with
This will not change power assignment. After you made your changes,
change the game status to 'Active' and the game starts again with the same
players playing the same powers.
And can I undo a rollback?
Yes, you can, thanks to the aptly called ROLLFORWARD command.
This command takes the same options as ROLLBACK
but instead of going back to an earlier phase, it jumps to a later phase,
provided that the game has never been processed since the last rollback.
Multiple rollbacks can be undone by a single rollforward and vice versa.
Note that if you changed a rule that affects the game results before
rolling forward, the results and even the game maps may look different
than before the rollback. For example if you chose a different blind rule,
the new player maps will reflect that change. Players may or may not have
kept copies of the older maps, and take this as an issue. It's therefore
advisable to make sure you have the players' full consent before carrying
What is the OFFICIAL command?
The OFFICIAL command has the syntax:
This command allows the Master to cause any PRESS and
BROADCAST messages that are given later in the current e-mail
message to be delivered using the specified subject (rather than the usual
e-mail subject "Diplomacy press"), and without the usual press header
("Message from Master to Austria", etc.).
The OFFICIAL command applies to all PRESS and
BROADCAST messages until the end of the current e-mail
message or until another OFFICIAL command is given. Note
that if no subject is provided in an
any subsequent PRESS and BROADCAST messages will
be sent as normal (with the usual subject and header). The
OFFICIAL command is limited to 60 characters.
And the REVEAL command?
The REVEAL command is just a single-word command. If a game
uses the NO_REVEAL rule, the REVEAL command must
be sent in by the Master after the game completes when the
time is ripe for player identities to be revealed. Only when this
command is sent in will the game be automatically reported for ranking
purposes, the final game summary be completed, etc., etc.
What if I am Mastering a game and if, for whatever reason, I need to
give up my position?
You (yes, you) are 100% responsible to locate a new human Master
for the game. Until that person e-mails in a valid
TAKEOVER command, the game is
still entirely your responsibility. Once you have located a willing
Master to take over for you, simply give that person the game's
current Master password and await his or her TAKEOVER
command. You will be mailed to let you know when you are no longer
the Master of the game.