Eternal Vigilance is the Price of Liberty
Greetings to all you Respectful Gamers. I wanted to introduce myself, and my guild, Eternal Vigilance, to you all. I start this post by explaining how I got to my current point in gaming and why I am excited about RIG and how EV can contribute to RIG's goals as I enter into the SWTOR realm. The middle is a complete history of my video gaming experience. Towards the end, I wrap it all up and explain how this path has led me to become an EV member.
I'm an experienced gamer and have been playing video games since centipede came out. My first semi-rpg video game experience was the original 100% text game, Zork, which I have fond memories of. I even played a word-based Star Trek game that was on the mainframe at the local college, that my dad got me access to. Then there was Gauntlet. My first game obsession was Rolling Thunder, a 2-d action game. My first personal computer game obsession was an Apple II game called Rescue Raiders, which was also a 2-d, scrolling screen game.
Over the years I played and enjoyed such games as Oregon Trail, Bard's Tale, the original HG2G, Leisure Suit Larry 1-6, Sim City and Sim City 2000, and a great space colonization game that I can't remember or find the name of.
Then I finally got a modern PC. Wolfenstein, Doom, Xwing, Alpha Centauri, lots of sims and shooters, and then found Freelancer, which was my first online game. I found a server I liked, which had all of about 50 active players, and joined a guild there and played quite a bit for a year or so. FL was pretty shallow, and I'd realized that playing in a shared, persistent universe where my success was seen by others was much more rewarding, so I started looking into other online games and learned about MMO's. I found Anarchy Online sometime around the summer of 2002, which I played for over a year. I joined a guild, The Athens Paladins, and eventually became a major recruiter. I enjoyed being in the guild, and eventually it and my fellow members were the only reason I logged on.
Then my ultimate obsession arrived, Morrowind. I have played Morrowind off and on since it came out. One of the best things about SP games like Morrowind is the ability to mod, which extends playability vastly. Oblivion was an awesome, if not quite up to expectations, sequel, which I still think is one of the best games of all time.
By this time, Anarchy Online was dying game, and I started looking around for another, more true sci-fi, game, and found EVE Online in 2003. I subbed up and played for a month or so, and then got busy with RL. I came back to EVE in earnest in February of 2004, and have been an avid EVE player since then. I like EVE a lot for several reasons. One, it's one of the few true sandbox games out there. The economy is nearly completly player driven, which is awesome. Also, EVE is INTENSELY multi-player. There IS plenty that you can do and enjoy as a solo player, but the VAST amount of content and wealth is only available through cooperation with your corpmembers or in larger groups of corporations known as alliances. I enjoyed this forced cooperation and quickly found that the player base was very mature and cooperative by MMO standards.
For the first year I was part of a low key PvE corporation, but soon made friends with a few players who sought to explore and exploit New Eden's vast low security and zero security areas. After some forays into lowsec on our own, my buddy Lucien and I found and joined a well known alliance that had staked out territory in zero-sec and moved ourselves out the edge of the galaxy to try our lot in lawless space, under constant threat of attack by other allainces and pirates seeking to usurp our claimed systems and resources. ASCN, as the allaince was known, was built as a conglomerate of cooperative corps in which each had as much autonomy as possible, but all shared a common vision of a cooperative regional power. However, our loose military organization was soon to be the victim of a conspiracy and total destruction.
ASCN was broken up and Lucien and I gathered and evacuated our growing resources to safer space. We enjoyed our first foray into 0.0 and realized how much more the game offered, and found an organization that was committed to really creating its own vision and game within the game, Es and Whizz. E&W was the EVE's only drug cartel, and was exploiting an obscure resource, drug items that often dropped in missions against pirates and were required by certain pirate agents to complete other missions, to make a fortune and a name.
Lucien and I quickly became leaders in Es & Whizz, and helped Masu'di to expand our influence and numbers, as well as weather several changes to the fundamental system of drug trading we relied on. Eventually, CCP actually added a whole line of illegal boosters to the game, which are substances that provide temporary boosts to a pilot's skills in certain areas. We feel that our constant pressure and presence in the game helped lead to this expansion, and we quickly expanded our operations to exploit the new resource, and grew into and allaince of corporations, known as Hedonistic Imperative (ticker: RELAX). You can read about us in a few articles, http://www.massively.com/2008/09/24/outlaws-of-eve-online-masudi/http://www.massively.com/tag/hedonistic-imperative/
I was a Director (as JirAnarion Atriedes, and Ja'Anarria) in E&W and then RELAX for several years. At our peak, we had over 250 members, and over 100 of those were very active. Fatigue and RL commitments set in, as always, and I started scaling back my leadership role about a year and a half ago. The alliance is still the main booster manufacturer and dealer in the game, but has become less active in the last year.
I love the open and some would say hardcore aspect of EVE's environment, as well as the seamless, all-inclusive universe where every player in the game was in the same world. I'll definitely miss this in SWTOR. I'm anxious about how I'll like what is certain to feel like a very small and linear universe, so it's important to me to pick a guild, and server, that provide a great group of players to make up for the smaller more limited feel that it's bound to have. I found EV by searching for discussions of server choice, and was drawn to you by both your pro-republic, grey-area philosophy in the SW universe, as well as your obvious commitment to a cohesive community.
I'm very interested, in whatever role I can, in contributing to the choice of a server that aligns in maturity and commitment to community that the folks at RIG seem to have. I'm excited that y'all are organizing under an explicit wish to have a server or two that are focused on more mature, respectful players. Here's a link to the page on which I've made my contribution to the discussion:http://www.swtor.com/community/showthread.php?t=221309&page=44
I know from my time running a large gaming org, that any guild/corp/org is only a sum of its members, and at its heart should be a group of players who have similar goals and philosophies of gaming in general and in the specific game world. I look forward to further exploring the writings and ideas of RIG members. I also look forward to the possibilities for exploring the limits of whatever part of the vast themepark SWTOR will provide for hints of a sandbox, and to taking full advantage of that where possible.