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Everything posted by Ardus

  1. Warm fuzzy flashbacks of big fluffy infra stacks. Godspeed Stewie.
  2. The game ended years ago, just nobody turned out the lights and played the "go home" music. Roll IRON.
  3. Well, I can only hope everybody else is slacking off on communications. We won't be and I'd love for it to become another powerful advantage in our pockets
  4. I've been making rounds (or getting/letting/slacking until Cent or Sal do it) telling allies whenever we even get the idea of signing a treaty with somebody. My little birds tell me this isn't exactly a unique practice, even if there are clear holes throughout CN. I think the problem is more evident with cancellations. People rarely cut ties on "good terms" anymore, if they ever did. Treaties don't fall until there is not a single hook left to hang it on. So when cancellation comes around, the one or both of the alliances probably (1) dislike the other, possibly intensely and/or (2) calculate that the other will be on the opposite side of a foreseeable conflict. The former provides an emotional motivation to be curt and cut with little heads up. The latter provides a pragmatic reason: you don't want to give a potential enemy any additional time to react or control a situation. I have been lucky to not have to cancel any treaties in recent history (excepting CTI and CE, which were already clearly defunct), so I can't provide detailed guidance on how to properly move forward with divergence. I can say that the trend of surprise nullification and misleading or false justifications provided (cancelling over A when in fact you're preparing for war B) provides for very dangerous and powerful resentment that people underestimate and which can lock up global affairs for a very long time. If nothing else: don't send deputies to do it, don't go public before you've informed in private, and be honest in your reasoning. The last may well prove surprisingly helpful and the other party you're looking to cut may give you a view you hadn't considered.
  5. I'm... ugh... in agreement with HoT. The LOIC strikes do nothing but stir up opposition and make free-net activists look like children. It's the online equivalent of pissing on the steps of the Capitol while yelling "YEAH, FIGHT DA POWAH" before the police drag you away.
  6. My general rule is to reserve aggression for the IC forums. Usually works well enough.
  7. Ardus

    The Infection Spreads

    I am the greatest monster in the history of humanity.
  8. Ardus

    The Infection Spreads

    The curtain opens to a small apartment with three friends, each drinking a different beverage. Ardus is surfing the web while the others try to decide what to watch on TV. The group has just completed the Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory drinking game. Ardus: Hey, y'all like Star Trek so you'll like this. Apparently the guy who did the voice of Q on Star Trek is the villain in the next season of Ponies. Widget & NonCNFriend: Really? Widget: We should watch Star Trek right now. Is it on Netflix? Ardus: Yes, it is. I'm not actually familiar with Q. Widget: He's a trickster space god, you'll love it. Ardus: Sounds good to me. NonCNFriend: So-and-so will love to hear about this. Ardus: Trekkie? NonCNFriend: No, Brony. Ardus: Ugh. NonCNFriend: Yeah, I accidentally caused it. I showed him the Starcraft video and... Ardus: The Starcraft video? You mean the one I showed you? The sync'd up one? NonCNFriend: Yeah, that one. Ardus: So... ultimately I'm responsible for this. NonCNFriend: *trying not to laugh* Yes... you are. Ardus: Well guys it was nice knowing you. **Ardus "attempts" to open his 7th story window. However, the apartment is in a sealed building and the window is thus bolted shut.** Ardus: Goddamnit. **Laughter ensues at my expense** FML
  9. I think the picture to the left of this text accurately captures my reaction to this.
  10. Ardus

    Who would win?

    Both alliances are immensely skilled in battle. Draw.
  11. I'm speaking to matters I'm not very familiar with as I did not participate, but I recall the Legion member used and shared the photos and album on IRC. If A shows B a picture and B laughs at it, B is certainly being mean, but has not elevated himself to our Slayer situation. B has not attempted to use OOC objects to influence the IC dynamic, nor has the IC dynamic led him to laugh at the pictures of A. MK laughs at Legion. It also laughs at everybody else, including enemies, neutrals, allies, and its own members. Especially its own members. What is "sick" is when people become so invested in a game that they set out to try and dig up real life material to use against people in that game. That is not just mean, but suggests an obsession with the game and its players that is unwell. Since you seem rather inspired by the subject, I must inquire as to your own opinion. Is it acceptable or unacceptable to seek out real life details of players to be used in-game? Is it acceptable or unacceptable to laugh or mock other players for real life details that make themselves apparent? Returning to the original sequence of posts you referenced, I'll note that only one of the quoted posts take a position contrary to the one I argue in the podcast. The rest simply don't like NoV, a position that was plenty justified by NoV's IC conduct in the lead-up to the war.
  12. I don't think I've ever denied that we're jerks. That said, I'm pretty sure the photobucket thing just sort of fell into their laps. I don't think they went digging for it.
  13. I also voted and volunteered Republican back then. Now I'm solid Democrat. It's amazing how much one can grow in the span of 3 years.
  14. Ardus


    Os has certainly done a bang up job as Sec-gen, however the efforts that led to ODN's progress from pariah began a long time before Os took the reins. Arguably it was the efforts of Arsenal, Joracy and others (incl. myself...not trying to sound arrogant or anything but I also put alot of work into laying that groundwork) that laid the groundwork for that. ODN's govt has always been a team effort no matter who was at the helm.Os's efforts to build on that base have nevertheless been impressive, and if the only reason he got 'pushed' out is his length of tenure then it is pretty sad way to repay him for his efforts. I refer you to my previous post.
  15. You missed the threads about the game dying. The game dying usually goes in hand with one of the other five.
  16. Ardus


    All you orange team people look alike to me.
  17. Ardus


    The same things that made VX exceedingly popular are what doomed him. He was idealistic, charismatic, and outspoken. That was wonderful for firing up the GATO membership, but he couldn't keep his mouth shut when he needed to most. Then again, we forget how little time he was given to work with. The span between GW2 and GW3 was the blink of an eye compared to modern timeframes. Maybe he could have turned out better. My perception of him is heavily tainted by his effort to spook VE out of GWIII after the /b/ assault. I can't remember what words I used, but they weren't kind.
  18. Ardus


    Back when I was Lord of the Viridian Entente, I made a note of it to bring new faces into the upper-echelons of government. At the time of my ascension, the Entente had always been ruled by the same old guard from near its inception, which caused problems. More than anything, I blamed groupthink for the policies that led us to isolation and annihilation in the Green Civil War. Bilrow may have been responsible for pulling the trigger, but it wouldn't have been possible if not for countless missteps on our part. I also worried that the general membership would grow frustrated by immobility. Without a chance to rise through the ranks, promising talent might up and relocate to other alliances or found their own in order to sate their desire to have a turn at the top. These things were of immediate consideration when I took over during the Second Viridian Era: my Lordship was the result of a massive government exodus and positions needed filling. So rather than tap the Ministry of Awesome, a roster of Viridia's old leaders kept on hand for advice and pinch hitting, I reached down and brought up people who'd never been in high government. There were some growing pains, but the hungry youngsters more than proved themselves. It was my first decision as Lord and probably my best. The subject of turnover pushed its way back to the front of my mind while watching the ODN elections. OsRavan had served as Secretary General of the Network for an incredible span of time and the general membership was growing restless about it. It didn't matter that he'd performed capably and led the ODN from pariah status to core member of C&G; the members didn't like the idea of one man staying on top for so long. The following election, at least from my outside perspective, appeared to be a referendum on that subject. The result of the election is ultimately inconsequential to my point, but rather I speak of it to show how democratic alliances can use their oft-criticized institutions as a channel to force turnover and keep the membership involved. Though the turnover leads to foreign policies of questionable stability, and democratic turnover can lead to very bad leaders (Vincent Xander, Ramirus, etc.) I think the internal benefits are ultimately a good thing. Non-democratic alliances do not have such checks on term length. Leaders can stay on top as long as they want. Leaders can choose to regularly shuffle high governments or choose to keep things in place as long as possible. It falls entirely on them to try and read the general membership and make decisions accordingly. The problem is that I don't think many non-democratic leaders actually stop and think about term length. Most folks will just favor stability over change. And while stability has its advantages, on the whole I believe this to be a bad choice, both for non-democratic alliances and for CN in general. CN is replete with stories of old leaders guiding their alliances into doom. Pacifica pre-Karma is perhaps the best example of this. The NPO, led by the same Emperor and Imperial Officers since forever, grew increasingly stagnant in diplomacy and internally. I've heard many people complain about the good ol' boy nature of Pacifica's governance and the overwhelming power of its Imperial Officers. The stagnation at the top promoted groupthink and, in the end, the NPO made horrible decisions until it was ruined in the Karma War. For other examples of failure encouraged by leadership stagnation, look at the already mentioned VE pre-GCW, GOONS pre-UjW (leadership stuck around too long, got bored, and pushed envelopes too far), or NpO pre-WotC (though Assington served a stint as Emperor). Groupthink isn't the only problem that grows with stagnation in turnover. Bringing in new leaders from time to time can help an alliance shed past grudges and make new diplomatic moves. That's not a guaranteed benefit, as people are more than happy to argue that new leaders are just as responsible for the sins of old leaders, but in my experience I've found it to be nonetheless effective. Appointing new leaders at the very top also helps prevent an alliance from becoming a mere cult of personality. If you have the same figurehead for too long, it may undermine an alliance's ability to function without him or her. That was Egore's most notable concern back in the First Viridian Era, that the VE would just be his cult of personality and die off whenever he decided to call it quits (a concern that led to my rise to power in the alliance). Alliances should always have an identifiable face or it becomes inconsequential (lookin' at you MHA), but if the face never changes it may have dire internal consequences. I hate to think of what the impact would be if Archon ever formally stepped down, for example. I'm not sure GOD could continue to exist without Xiphosis at the helm. Nobody could fill the shoes. Finally, stagnation at the top is terrible for CN as a whole. For one, it results in the bifurcation of the game: there's the game leaders play and the game followers play. This is true no matter what, but giving new people a chance to enter the leader game blurs the line in a beneficial manner: the new leaders develop an appreciation for the leadership game and the followers gain new, knowledgeable players in the form of former leaders. Former leaders may be loathe to return to the follower game, but I've always found the challenge of figuring things out from a general member's perspective to be fun. Second, stagnation in non-democratic alliances encourages the plethora of microalliances we see today. Since people can't climb the ladder in the blue-chip alliances, they leave to go start their own. This is an unqualified bad. The stagnation at the top is reinforced as prospective replacements leave. Meanwhile the treaty web grows more complicated as new microleaders try to wrestle into the leadership game. They almost invariably fail and simply become proxy states of other alliances. So if you're in charge of a non-democratic alliance, look at your present roster. Is it more or less the same as it was a year ago? If so, stop and actually discuss the merits and detriments of this fact. If you choose to stay the course, that's fine, but you may find shuffling things to be surprisingly tantalizing.
  19. I am in right alliance

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