In Part 2, I exploded some of the myths about EVE. They were myths which clouded men's minds, preventing pre-Order highsec from giving birth to a government, but which were pierced by the vision of the Saviour of Highsec. That's not roleplaying; I'm just telling it like it is.
Parts 1 and 2 bring us to today's post, in which I will describe how the New Order will achieve "Final Victory", which is to say, 100% Code-compliance in highsec. Having read the previous posts, the reader will understand that "taking over" a system is distinct from holding in-game sovereignty. This means it's possible to conquer highsec, but still leaves open the question of how it's done.
I have spoken extemporaneously on this subject with some of my Agents before. Today the EVE community at large will catch a glimpse of the way highsec is won. It's something that is widely misunderstood. Partly that's because people are still misled by the myths that I exploded in Part 2. But more importantly, it's because the process of taking space in highsec is so completely different from the process of taking space in nullsec.
In nullsec, conquest usually involves a very brief period of extremely intense activity, followed by a long period of doing nothing. To take space, an alliance or coalition calls up every pilot it can get its hands on, jams them into massive fleets, and puts them to work grinding structures non-stop for a few days or a few weeks. In unusually evenly-matched sov battles, this may be preceded by a longer period of fleet skirmishes, finally followed by the blitzkrieg I just described. After the blitzkrieg is over, sovereignty is won. Because taking sov is such a pain, and because the sov system so favors the defender, the victors may then rest on their laurels. Eventually, some alliance or coalition will finally show up to try to take that space away. But it may be a very long time before such a threat appears. In some cases it can take years.
Thus, nullsec conquest is all about intensity, not endurance. You can pinpoint the isolated, decisive battles that determined a region's fate. Once taken, the day-to-day defense of the region requires nothing. You might get a random pirate here or there, but nothing that can actually threaten sovereignty. If you join a nullsec alliance today, it's likely that they hold space because once upon a time they got enough people together to win a few fleet battles and spend a short while grinding structures. After that, peace.
The carebear and the skeptic assume that the same must be true of any attempt to take over highsec--which must therefore make it impossible to conquer. If you gank a miner, he'll say, "But what about all the miners you didn't gank today?" If you bump a miner, he'll say, "As long as you're bumping me, you're not bumping anyone else." They think that for the New Order to be successful, it must simultaneously gank every miner in highsec. They think every asteroid belt must be completely cleansed of Code-violators, at this very moment, or else it's all pointless.
That's classic nullsec blitzkrieg thinking: Be in control of the field of battle at the moment the timer runs out. Grind all the structures at once. There is no such thing as a gradual victory. You can't slowly take sovereignty of a system. It must happen right now, all-or-nothing. And if you lose the battle today, your alliance could start to collapse tomorrow.
Needless to say, if highsec were anything like that, the New Order would have disappeared on Day One, on the first day I started bumping miners out of the Halaima ice field. That's pretty much what the miners expected to happen. They told me that if I couldn't keep the ice field 100% free of miners, then I wasn't making any difference at all. Since I could only bump one miner at a time, I couldn't possibly win, so I should just quit. If I viewed EVE and highsec from the same perspective that the miners did, then quitting would have been the only reasonable thing for me to do.
But as you know, that's not what happened.
Instead, the bumping of miners in the Halaima ice field created a spark. The New Order grew in influence and power. In Part 1, we took a look at some of the signs that point toward the New Order's success. Tens of thousands of players have either chosen to become Code-compliant or have been forced to change the way they play in highsec. Many thousands more changed their attitudes and opinions about highsec, whether they lived there or not. Some of the people who changed their attitudes happened to work for CCP.
By the way, how many miners are in the Halaima ice field right now? Zero. Because there is no Halaima ice field. Depending on what time of day you're reading this, there may not even be an ice anomaly active there. As a result of the New Order and my widely-read criticisms of AFK infinite ice-mining--on MinerBumping, on EVE-O, on TheMittani.com--CCP saw fit to remove all static ice fields, and more importantly, all infinite ice from EVE. Infinite ice had been a fixture in EVE almost from the beginning of the game. Now it's gone. Every single miner in highsec who made a living sitting next to an infinite block of ice and clicking once or twice an hour has been forced to abandon that most bot-aspirant of lifestyles.
So, June 2012 Halaima ice miner, I was not able to bump all of you from the ice field at once. I was able to bump all of the infinite ice out of the galaxy.
The New Order isn't just about getting rid of infinite ice, though. Certainly it's a big feather in our collective caps, but it's only the beginning. It's our goal to eliminate all bot-aspirancy from highsec. We want to destroy the ideology that says highsec is supposed to be risk-free, and that players can go around untanked and AFK without suffering any consequences. That's an ambitious goal--and I'd say we're off to a good start.
More controversially, we want to delegitimize the entire single-player, no-PvP carebear style of play. We want to convince the EVE community at large that the AFK carebear, who plays for the sole purpose of hoarding isk and not interacting with anyone else, contributes nothing to the game and should be treated accordingly. Before the New Order, no one had anything to say about AFK miners. Now they're widely ridiculed as fools or parasites.
We want the EVE community to view the carebears with the same negative attitude that was once reserved for highsec gankers.
This is something that happens gradually, but over time, you can see the results. Every carebear who gets bumped, ganked, wardecced, scammed, awoxed, or aggression-gamed into losing his precious isk serves as a demonstration that carebearism isn't worth it.
Each "victim" is also representative of an opportunity. Countless former carebears have learned to enjoy EVE for the first time because of the New Order. Many have already decided to obey the Code. And even those who absolutely hate and defy us have been forced to improve their play in order to adapt to our existence.
Over time, the New Order creates a snowball effect. More people hear about us, more people hear about the Code, more learn how to play EVE properly, and more people learn to despise carebearism. Even the most stubborn carebear will learn. It's one thing to be ganked once, or twice, or even three times. It's quite another to be ganked over and over again, week after week, month after month, year after year. In time, they either follow the Code, leave highsec, or quit EVE forever. I prefer the first option, but I'll take any of the three.
Because the effect of the New Order accumulates over time, our strength is based on endurance. Our mode of operation is completely different from that of a nullsec blitzkrieg. We don't gank for a week or two and then disappear. That's what Hulkageddon was about. It involved countless ganks, and produced miner tears for a short time, but ultimately had no lasting effect whatsoever.
(When the Goons announced that they would sponsor Hulkageddon for an indefinite period, that did have an impact. But "Hulkageddon Infinity" only lasted for a couple months. During that period, the Goons drew upon their empire's technetium riches and reimbursed just shy of 50 billion isk. As the Father of the New Order, I have personally raised and reimbursed roughly quadruple that amount.)
The carebears have seen the effect we've had, and have been forced to change the way they play EVE because of it. Still, they don't understand it. They'll still give you the old "as long as you're bumping me you're not bumping anyone else" line. They come up with arbitrary victory conditions and declare we've failed them: "I'm mining AFK right now, you'll never catch me!" or "Unless you do X billion in damages every day, you lose."
Whenever a miner would give me a line like that during our bump session ("I was already full!" or "You didn't break that mining cycle, so I win!"), I would always respond by saying that as long as I broke even one mining cycle, or convinced even one miner to change his ways, then I had achieved total victory. When the miner realized that I wasn't allowing him to impose his victory conditions on me, it shattered his confidence, and he usually docked up.
The reality is that we don't have to meet any arbitrary victory conditions. There's no quota for a number of carebears we need to gank, or systems we need to clear at any given time. Such metrics exist only for the purpose of convincing us that we can't succeed and need to stop trying. We didn't stop; we endured. We will continue to endure, year after year. Everyone will know who we are and what we're about. Our ideas and our vision of the way highsec should be will become more and more influential. Our enemies will be driven mad because everyone will be talking about us and trying to adapt to us. Because we just won't go away.
In this respect, there is one similarity between highsec and nullsec: Persistence is everything. If you go back to the old sovereignty maps from years ago, you'll see that things do change over time in nullsec. The alliances who endure get kicked from one part of the map to the other, over and over. The Goons are powerful today, not because they never lost space, but because they didn't quit after they lost their space. Over the years, they've been kicked out of half of the regions in nullsec, but they kept coming back. The same is true for many of the other alliances seen on today's sovereignty maps.
If persistence is power, then who has more power than the New Order? It's fitting that we should become the most persistent organization in EVE: The New Order was founded by a single ship, alone, bumping one miner at a time.
The New Order can never be defeated. It's a lucky thing that we're the good guys.