Allan Calhamer dies: Allan Calhamer invented the popular board game “Diplomacy” nearly 60 years ago. He died last week at 81.
Allan Calhamer, the creator of the board game “Diplomacy,” died last week in Chicago. He was 81.
“He was brilliant and iconoclastic and designed this game that’s played around the world, and he’s adored by nerds throughout the world,” his daughter, Selenne Calhamer-Boling, told The Associated Press on Saturday.
“Diplomacy,” a board game popular with President Kennedy, was created by Calhamer in 1954 and was released five years later. It was set just before World War I in Europe
“But at the end of the day he was a great dad. He was at all the T-ball games and all the screechy, horrible orchestra concerts and all the klutzy ballet recitals,” Calhamer-Boling added. ”I guess that’s how I’ll remember him.”
In the game, players represent England, Italy, Russia, Turkey, Germany, France, or Austria-Hungary. It includes armies, fleets, supply centers, and diplomatic negotiations to take over Europe.
“It’s pitiless, because in the game Diplomacy, there will be one winner,” game designer Steve Jackson, who founded Steve Jackson Games, told the Chicago Sun-Times. “You negotiate, you make deals, you lie.”
Mike Webb, the vice president of marketing with Alliance Game Distributors told the paper: “In many ways, the hobby game industry as we know it owes its existence to Allan Calhamer.”
“Diplomacy,” he said, “introduced bluffing, lying and manipulation” to board games instead of flat-out strategy like in chess.
“Diplomacy opened up entirely new dimensions to gaming, truly bringing a new level of social interaction into gaming, a legacy that can be seen today in hundreds of hobby games,” he said.
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