Greedy Goblin

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

The One Empire: assimilation and openness

Before I'd start describing how The One Empire of EVE will look like, I'd like to emphasize that I am a politologist of forming this Empire, a "think tank" if you wish and not at all a politician or a leader. I cannot be a leader, you'll see why in the third part of the Empire-series.

The leader chooses between alternatives, makes decisions. The politologist tries to figure out natural laws of politics. He doesn't give orders, his statements worth following because they are true (assuming he is right). It doesn't mean authority, his statements are true or false on their own, regardless of his person. With a simplified example: when one tells "don't fit weapons on a Hulk, since it's much weaker than a battleship which costs the same", you are not following this advice because you obeyed the speaker but because the speech convinced you.

The first characteristic of The One Empire is that it's assimilative and open. It means that it accepts and tries to take anyone useful into itself. One can join it if he is ready to obey its rules. Being assimilative is necessary for success. If any useful person thinks that this Empire will not take him, he will fight against it, simply for survival. Since the seed of the Empire is now small and weak, it has no chance to win against the countless people who are not inside. The only way to win is fighting only against organizations but not people. When a conflict occurs with the first neighbor whose land is to be conquered, the Empire-baby must believably communicate that this war is against the neighboring alliance structure and not its members. The members, assuming they accept the rules of the Empire, can join, keeping their ships and even POS-es, just replacing the flag.

Remember, that while "freedom" is an often used slogan, the average guy is not at all free. He obeys his corp leader, he just does as he told, he owns no part of the corporate assets nor has any control over it. Assuming he isn't a useless idiot it's easy to make him recognize that by changing flags, he wouldn't get into worse position. His current leaders are lying when they tell "we fight for our freedom", the truth is that he is made to fight only for the position of his leaders, he fights for the continuation of his exploited underdog status. If The Empire assimilates his homeland, he would lose nothing while his leaders would lose their status. Actually he would gain by joining because in a larger organization he'd have more options (see the second part).

Obviously to be assimilative, The Empire must not be formed around an idea that cannot be adopted by most people. Typically the Goons can't be The Empire. Former Goons can be members of course, but The Goonswarm can't grow into The Empire itself, since most EVE players are not on, nor they want to be, neither they subscribe to the Goon philosophy of griefing. If the Goons would declare that they want to own all the stars, tomorrow everyone else would unite against them and crush them. The Empire must be free of anything that divides people in any other way than useful/useless.

The above also means that while The One Empire will have a leader, he will be anything but an omnipotent Emperor. The personalities of people differ and those who would find the leaders style and way of leading unacceptable could not be assimilated, therefore would be a mortal enemy of The Empire. To avoid that, The Empire must have the authority of law and not of any person. There must be written laws that tell the obligations and rights of a member, guaranteeing that all he has to obey is the written law and as long as he does so, he is not subjected to the tyranny of any individual. Obviously the "do as the FC says in battle" is an exception from that, but I doubt that any sane man would question its necessity or would consider it oppression. After all it applies to the limited time of the battle and due to the size of the task (to conquer 5000 systems in 3 years, you must conquer 5 every day) there will be several fleets running concurrently allowing one to pick an FC he likes.

The second criteria is openness: The Empire must clearly state that its aim is to become The Empire and own all the stars. It can't be done silently. Without it, the people who'd like to join can't find it and the members of the enemy alliances can be told by their leaders that "it's just another bunch of mean kids who want to kill you for fun, who would take our systems and would kick you out of it. You must fight against them". If The Empire clearly states that it want to have all the stars, the people will find it much more easy to believe that they will be welcomed inside it, as such organization needs legions. While leaders like secrecy as it make them feel special, conquering the galaxy can't be done with low profile. It has to be open, frank and upfront, not because of moral but to make assimilation possible.

So if you already had Galaxy-conquering dreams just kept it secret and acted like taking just a few systems now and then, it's time to speak up. You will never win if you keep hiding.

EVE Business report: Tuesday morning 12.3B (2 PLEX behind for second account, 0.3B spent on Titan project, new Int and Mem +5 implants)
Remember that you can participate in our EVE conversations on the "goblinworks" channel (60-80 people on peak time) and your UI suggestions are welcomed.

PS: is there a way to request more than the last 1000 wallet item from the API? Or to request only one item type? (which is possible with the in-game wallet).


Kana said...

Not sure if I understand last question correctly, but try EveHQ plugin "Prism", it sure have item filters on wallet transactions and more than 1000 transactions in wallet.

antronics said...

..Few things Gevlon.

Assimilation. Say all sov holding corps and alliances say that tomorrow they will all join into a new alliance. Every 0.0 system is now held by Super Awesome Happy Fun Time Null Corp. your Eve "goal" has now been accomplished, but what has changed?

Culture. You speak of some corp and alliance members are fooled into believing that they have freedom. I say, even though they are forced to fight for their leaders sov, they are still fighting for freedom. They enjoy and want to keep the culture of their corp. it's give and take: if they want to continue to reap the fruits of being a corp member in their favorite corp, they are forced to engage in interstellar combat. Fairs fair.

Motives. I gotta tell you, you being so honest with your ideas and philosophies, and so damn a-social, rubs people the wrong way. Hell I love your blog and have read every entry, and you still rub me the wrong way. The denizens of Eve have a clear motive and target: your kooky ideas showing any signs of success. Be prepared for aggressive backlash.

Fun factor. Say you are right, and most of your opposing 0.0 corps choose to change their flag to 'The Empire'. This goes along swimmingly for a time. Now what? You get a group of hardcore tough as nails PvPers who are chomping at the bit for some action. Who are they going to target? The milk toast pilots who will fly your flag with no fight? Or 'The Empire' it self. Just for the lulz.

Man, Gevlon entering Eve could have gone a couple of ways. I really don't like this way.

Anonymous said...

You're forgetting one thing: it's unlikely this alliance could start from nothing. If you were to take sov, anywhere, then you would straight away have larger alliances bearing down on you (sov from smaller alliances is 'granted' by the bigger ones, no matter where the space), and you couldnt negociate a small sov with your message of conquering. I don't think your empire would have anywhere to grow, which is necessary to get the numbers you need for your endeavour.

Anonymous said...

@Antronics - An empire can only keep it's war-hungry assimilants from turning in on itself by providing a constant stream of outsider to battle. The optimum path of growth will be for the Empire to grow bigger and bigger until

@Gevlon. Your weak spot is that people aren't asocial and many would rather have a small limited corp that owns a couple of stars over a huge mega-corp that could provide them with anything just because they can say it is theirs.

chewy said...

I'm enjoying this series Gevlon.

You probably realise but what you need is critical mass, I have no idea what that number is but it will be an uphill struggle until it is reached and then it will only be a matter of time before you inevitably succeed.

Anonymous said...

I fail to see how *you* will have won EVE by your plans.

Can you elaborate how having a adviser role in an "just join us" Alliance is *you* winning EVE? Being the one who got the ball rolling isn't really winning, is it?

Gevlon said...

@Anonymous: Team games are won by teams and not individuals.

arthurwellsley said...

Your blog post reads like a cross between Niccolo Machiavelli's successes in leading the Florentine Militia in 1503 through to 1506, and the books he subsequently wrote, most notably "The Prince",
Plato's "Philosopher Kings" from his book "The Republic". Plato described them as "those who love the sight of truth".

Remember though Gevlon, that Machiavelli was tortured at one point during his life, when an opposing power took control, and Plato was sold into slavery when he fell foul of a leader.

Eaten by a Grue said...

I can see how being in a huge guild would be an economic benefit. But don't many people play EvE for what would be considered an economically irrational reason - PvP? If we are all on one team, who is there to PvP with?

Cromwell said...

So you want a Empire but you dont want to lead one. Thats Bbad from the start.

Also it is untrue that people act on what people say and not who they are. They sure can but imagine the following...

You say in your humble opinion the leader should act like X. Why should he do it?

You can argue that you are right but in such Situations you can rarely proof it beyond doubt.

So he has to put his trust in your opinion and that means he acts on what you are saying because its you.

To know that youre right beyond a doubt he has to have exact the same knowledge or more about the same whatevers, maybe some kind of armchairpsychology in this case, as you.

Then the both of you can argue on the same base of knowledge and he can see that you are right.

But to get the same level of knowledge will take him much effort on top of the effort he has to put in knowing how to do the things you wont because you wont lead your empire.

In this case for what exactly does he need you except a second pair of eyes and a second opinion to supervise himself.

Which means you want to win eve, with one big empire, and the role you want for yourself in this empire is that of one who has a opinion about things which he then tells the leader and hopes he acts on it.

In this role if you make him a sandwhich while telling him your thoughts you would double effectivity of your position.

antronics said...

..@Dobablo. Combat pilots want to fight. They will get while the gettings good. If their targets come from challenging opposition, great. If that stagnates, who will become their target?

This kind of operation would require the love and admiration to their dear leader. How can you get that from skilled pilots who only care about pew pew?

Larofeticus said...

"But don't many people play EvE for what would be considered an economically irrational reason - PvP?"

Pvp is not economically irrational. No more than it is economically irrational to prefer tacos to pizza or a red car to a blue one. Satisfying consumers is the the driving force behind all economic activity in any universe. In eve, demand is driven by bloodthirsty pilots who want ships, weapons, and implants in order to compete against other pilots.

But there is a snag: the bottleneck resource needed to satisfy pvp demand isn't ships or items; it's pilots. Without risk taking targets, all other resources in the game are worthless.

The "One Eve Empire" proposes to unite all of 0.0 under one banner. All blues, no targets. Unless one defects. I will move to NPC space and all of 0.0 will be my Eden.

Alrenous said...

Like being a moron, failing is socially unacceptable. Like admitting being a moron so you can fix it, you should risk failure. Not risking failure is much worse than being socially looked down on - it is boring.

David Caddock said...

@Cromwell Gevlon sees himself to be the Ben Franklin of The One Empire and is in search of a George Washington.

@Gevlon Maybe in this vein, refer to your interstellar political organization as a republic, not an empire. An empire has an emperor, power in a man, not in laws. A republic is willfully joined, and is ruled by written law.

Tom said...

At the risk of giving Gevlon too much credit, what he is doing with these posts is playing his meta game. He is deliberately prepping the battlespace with propaganda. Many who are commenting here are preening bittervets....Gevlon knows how to push your ape-subroutine buttons and you are helping him with his meta objective which has not been revealed to you on this blog...

antronics said...

..How about the economical aspects of holding all 0.0 systems?

How much isk a month does it take to hold sov on one system? Now times that by the number of 0.0 systems in Eve. Now ponder how the hell your going to come up with that mortgage payment each month.

Oh, and don't say tech moons and rare ore. Those materials are bought by people making T2 ships, to fight and protect their 0.0. BUT now they don't have 0.0. So you have just lost a majority of your customer base. Great.

Bozzor said...

I admired the Undergeared project, not because was possible, but because YOU wanted to PROVE it was possible.

I disliked the Titan plan because i really see no point to have a Titan, but i liked that you want a Titan and be a Titan pilot.It is a timely and costly endeavoure, i respect it.It is also possible to achieve.

Now, i STILL beleive that the One Empire plan is impossible, tho, sa you see, i STILL read and reply to your posts.

Conquering 5 systems / day, by force or having corp/alliances joining your Empire.Doesn't sound impossible, even it is vey possible...but only in numbers.

It is a goal that i beleive it is imposible, and for that, i WILL join the Empire, not because i secretly think you will be right, but because i like the imposible proving to be imposible and slap me in the face with a huge reallity-check hand.

I am going to tell ya now, where you will have the first issues with this plan.
1.You need numbers (like 1000), before you even consider to have a 0.0 place (rented or conquered).
2.After this, you will have either a LANDLORD (the one you rented from) EITHER a powerful enemy (alliance you attacked AND his allies, most likely beeing them GOONS, or TEST, or AAA, or RAIDEN. or whatever big and nasty allicne in EvE).Good LUCK beating one of them if you attacked their ally OR good luck not being kicked from your rented systems because you started a war WITHOUT your landlord giving the nod.

Should i go to no 3., when even if you MIRACOUSLY control 20% of the 0.0 systems with the declared goal to control all null space, and facing an alliance of the other 80% of null steamrolling you just for the lulz?

Pls, stick to the Titan plan.It's only ISK and time.

Audeles said...

Everybody is taking the "one empire" thing too literally. RvB is two warring factions that can combine to "purple" when the need arises. Such a system could conquer everything, yet give pvpers the action they're after.

antronics said...

..I don't like the outlook and motives that Gevlon has gone down in Eve.

But maybe I am looking at the destination only, and not the journey.

In 'The Empire', fighting, conniving, politicing, and maneuvering while enroute to the goal of holding all 0.0 sov could be one hell of a ride.

Not what I would have picked, but might be fun none the less.

I'll have to consult the hitchiker's guide.

P.S. Gevlon, don't forget your towel.