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I focus almost exclusively on PvP, whether solo, small gang, or large bloc warfare. In the past, I've been a miner, mission runner, and faction warfare jockey. I'm particularly interested in helping high-sec players get into 0.0 combat.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Character & Cowardice

The way you conduct yourself in each situation builds a narrative about you.  This is called character, and equally applies to organizations, too.  In many cases, an individual character is much easier to redeem than that of a whole group.  Character, when publicly known, generates reputation.  But you control your character; you don’t control your reputation.  A deservedly bad reputation is a reflection of poor character.

A null-sec alliance should hold character in high regard.  Entities that respect their enemy, offer equal fights, honor diplomatic agreements – both in letter and in spirit – and have pilots who honor 1v1s, don’t scam, and abide by their word will face adversaries, not enemies.  Hatred, spite, and deceit do not contribute to a positive reputation.  Another player can respect your alliance even if they are opposing it, but only if you have good character.

I’m starting to think Insidious Empire has poor character.

Is that because I was killed afk-ratting up my sec status in Tenal while I put my daughter to bed?  No; I was afk, they killed me; that’s how the game is played.

Is it because Insidious Empire now controls Cobalt Edge, space Razor had previously controlled?  No.  We didn’t offer even one fleet to defend it.  Our plan was to use it for renters, but with the CFC rental program up and running, that plan went to the wayside well before any of us knew who EMP was.

No, the reasons I have no respect for Insidious Empire lie with how they operate, not what they do.

The first thing that made me question their character was Phreeze’s news postings on TheMittani.com about Razor’s activity.  Not only is it inappropriate for the leader of an alliance actively engaged in grinding structures from Razor to post updates about Razor, but he took the opportunity to spin the facts multiple times.

For example, I’d be okay if he said, “Insidious Empire conquered Cobalt Edge”.  Technically that’s true, but his boys faced no resistence.  But stating, “Insidious Empire conquered Cobalt Edge from Razor Alliance” without immediately following up with, “When contacted, Razor confirmed that it had no interest in Cobalt Edge and wished Insidious Empire well,” misrepresents the action entirely.  It implies that plucky pilots from EMP overcame noble defenders and deserve a triumph through the streets of Rome.  Even had another reporter written the story, it would be more forgivable.  As it is, he did a shady thing, for no real purpose; EMP has no hope of taking Tenal; Razor has no interest in taking Cobalt Edge.

But the other issue I have with EMP comes from the line members.  Beyond a general arrogance and fifteen-year-old demeanor in local (perhaps I’m just sensitive to this, since Razor has a no-local-talk policy that really makes sense), I’ve seen no evidence that EMP has any interest in engaging at equal numbers – or even when they slightly outnumber their enemy.

Where is this coming from?  Last night, I and six other goats were hunting a small EMP gang that decided to camp A1RR.  They had a Falcon, Vexor, Thorax, a couple tacklers, and a couple more DPS ships.  Yes, remember that: a Falcon.

We had a Vagabond (me), prober (my alt), Rapier, Harbinger Navy Issue, a Vulture, and a Sabre, and another DPS ship.  We were light on tackle other than our Rapier, but we did have a Vulture and a Sabre.

I believe we were dead even on numbers (if you include my prober, which was in a scary Buzzard), but that Falcon would completely eliminate one or two people from the field.  Had we been in EMP’s gang, we would have burned off from the gate, or warped to a nearby planet, set up, and engaged.

Their reaction?  They fled for the hills.  We tried to chase them – becoming strung out in the process – and they still fled.  That got me thinking about previous engagements with EMP.

I don’t believe any EMP pilot has ever agreed to a 1v1 with me.  I don’t believe any EMP fleet has ever engaged at equal numbers, regardless of composition (and, let’s be honest, the fleet we had yesterday was a kitchen sink response fleet; hardly very organized).

One might argue, “Yes, but they didn’t know what you had in nearby systems”.

If by “didn’t know” what was in the nearby systems, you mean they didn’t take the time to check local as they fled across the breadth of Tenal, then yes, you’re right. ::sarcasm::  They also have static campers throughout our major systems.  They did know what we had.

“But, do you expect them to engage when they aren’t assured of victory?”  Yes; we did.  It’s called a game.  If you only engage when the outcome is certain, what’s the point of playing?

We’re not talking about sov warfare here; nothing was at stake except a couple hundred million isk each – a paltry sum – but as they say, “blood will tell”.  When roaming pilots are risk-adverse, it says something about the character of the alliance.

They came come up with all the agit-prop they want; no one in Razor is going to fear them unless they demonstrate the warrior’s way, and ganking ratters isn’t it.  By all means, continue ganking ratters, just be honest about what you’re doing; padding your killboard, not improving your skill.

Not hating, just saying…

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