Sunday, June 21, 2009

A (mostly) Impartial View of Empires

Eve, a universe built by it's most powerful members, capsuleers. We have created this universe, and the politics, ourselves. Our boundaries are not influenced by real world politics, diplomatic relations, or prejudices.

We have arguably the most powerful US based alliances (Goonswarm), allied with a notoriously strong Russian alliance (Red Alliance). We have all manners of the spectrum, from one extreme to another, coupled in varying degrees of peace.
We have US based alliances fighting UK based alliances, countries fighting amongst themselves, and at times, what was a peaceful alliance between two entities, turned sour at the drop of a hat.
No, the real world has very little precedence here in our Utopia of the future. Our collective mistress Eve, is both harsh and rewarding. While we all fight over her, she accommodates us all.

We have seen empires, rise and fall in the last several years. What would take years in the real world, takes us weeks. What would take a few hundred years in the real world, we can accomplish in months or even years.

Granted, I have not been the most interested over the last several years, but lately, it has become much more interesting to me. The relationships between super powers, and the rise and fall of these powers. It's like a galactic soap opera, but one that we all take part in to varying degrees.

Lately, we have seen the collapse of what could very well be called the greatest empire Eve has ever seen, Band of Brothers. At one point, this empire controlled nearly half of controllable space. Nearly HALF of the entire 0.0 universe, was under the control of BoB at one point. This is nearly inconceivable at today's times.
This group took on the universe, and held them all back. They rose, and ultimately (due to a very poorly designed game mechanic that was likely overlooked) fell, as we all must.

From the history of the olden Super Powers, we can pull many lessons, too many to count, be it lessons of trust and distrust, lessons of fleet tactics, lessons of manipulating game mechanics (go go gadget moon mineral reaction exploit) but today, I would like to focus on rises, falls, and sustains.

One hard lesson learned, and has often been avoided by leaders, is that there is a limit to what you can control. Alliances have often decided not to heed the lessons learned, and pushed the boundaries until the bubble popped.

Some have been able to recover, withdrawing and licking their wounds, to live and fight another day. Some have thrown everything they had into expanding that bubble, so that when it broke, so did they.

This brings me to the point of all of this rambling, sort of an open discussion about what will current and future alliances do?

For the most part, 0.0 space is settled, entrenched, and lets be fair, boring. In the last year there have been spouts of fighting in random pockets here and there, but for the most part, everything has been stable. Until the great shift in the south...

This has seen the movement of Goons from nestled up with their Red bedfellows, to the most coveted area of space, the South West. This has caused a huge shift in the entire Southern section of space.

The void Goons left, needed to be filled. Red tried, but recent actions from Atlas have tested Red's ability to maintain that space. Scorched Earth has also entered the fray, picking up sections of space.

Against All Authorities owns what could be the largest chunk of real estate in the universe, and where they likely could have pushed into Red territory, they seem to have taken a step back and allowed others to do that work. Atlas's push, asks a question. This seemingly small alliance (small in publicity, they haven't been in the news much) pushing against one of the most tested alliances, how far will they push until they surpass that invisible line, which separates what can be defended, from that fragile bubble.

Goons, starting to settle in their new home, haven't exactly been very vocal with claims to help their old and best allies to defend their space, but instead, rumors have been heard that they are claiming to focus on Stain as their next step.

Will this super power, who has just finished a massive invasion and relocation, stretch themselves out as BoB did years ago?

I've been a part of a few different 0.0 alliances, and one question seems to be continuous amongst lower level members, "when are we getting more space?". As soon as a ratter arrives in a system where someone else is already ratting, they want to expand. More space always means more benefits to them. But intelligent leaders who have foresight, will prolong expansion as long as possible, until they are overconfident they will be able to not only successfully invade, AND defend any counter attacks.

I just realized that I had a sort of general idea on what I was going to talk about, but I've prolly failed very much in that regards, haha. Oh well, I've lost my train of thought, and likely just as well, as the rambling will start.

Long story short, will goons push themselves too far and collapse? Will Atlas do the same, or are they on the rise to be another mega power?