First off I am writing this here so I can see it in 'forum form' then will transfer a polished version onto Art of War.
I also post here because this is the Strategy Discussion area - I used to post Art of War stuff on General Discussion but makes more sense to post it here.
Some of what will be written here has been said before and others bits may not have been..
It is a very large subject and the difficulty is in what order to put things and how to keep it in a condense form. If I was a decent drawing person it would probably be easier for me to draw lots of pictures with little foot notes, but alas one is not so will try to keep it simple. (if you have seen my entry into the community competition in fan Creations you will be pleased I have not tried to draw pictures in this part)
I have been meaning to post this up for quite some time but have not attempted it in the past - least under this heading.
An expert who likes to define things (overly much) may decide that this is not strictly Psychological Warfare - well to me it is defined that way for internal auditing and referencing and if you disagree well call it what you will for easier referencing for yourself. (for example you could call it 'Carebear stare' if you so wish).
Where to begin is the big question. You are probably aware of my not so humble beginnings in Battle Pirates - due to amount of times I use it as an example when a player decides to say how 'unfair' the game is. If you are aware of this then just skip the next bit and wait patiently for Part Two.
Part oneRevenge Raid 2:
The time is Revenge Raid 2 I was very much a newbie and this was the first Raid I was aware of (apparently I was about in RR1 - the very first raid - but I do not recall that and as someone said I probably did not know what was going on. Which is a good point of accuracy because getting the ship out onto the map I often saw as a victory in itself (simple mind and simple things go hand in hand).
RR2 has maybe a day or couple days to start and relocate is in operation when a sizable alliance comes in. The comms are filled with them chattering and not really allowing others to use them - this being the time of just one comms and very limiting, especially with no message system at that time - the new arrivals were a strong force and to me it was clear they were not in 225 to be playing nicely despite what they said about arriving to 'help' the sector.
Initially they were hitting the other sectors (at this point I was kinda vaguely aware of sectors and was mainly happily hitting my neighbours in 225 who had hit me first).
The coords of 226 were being posted and a lot of chatter which seemed to me a bit too much for show. - others may have disagreed at that time but time told very clearly that I was right.
They could have used private message system/FB group or whatever but they wanted to be seen as both helpful and formidable at the same time. You can often see a similar thing going on in sector comms, posed as if it was general conversation but in reality just the people concerned bragging, boasting trying to get the local population to believe they are in fact wonderful - as well as a kind of threat to anyone who may disagree with them in future.
Fast forward and I am SOS / KOS 'Sink on Sight' / 'Kill on Sight'. They had managed to twist a number of things around and made all the big tough guys of 225 with their big tough guy words into quiet little mice as well as the other alliances. (this was long before Alliances had an official feature in game).
Lies, slander and BS were flung at me from every direction and not using my intelligence I can safely say I actually lost my temper out of frustration.
This being a game with so limited a form to communicate with people and it being a very much level based game (back then)
, I could not rely on my dig in and fight mentality as that was pointless especially as I am armed with long boat and marauders and the enemy armed with all sorts and in huge numbers. To top it all I managed to get myself put on /ignore by a good number of the sector.
I am a strong believer in stating what is wrong to shape a better community/future and many other people are strong believers in keeping there heads down and taking any silver thrown in their direction. unless they find something more solid to 'stand on'.
So there is Wulf a low level with zero back up while they had more than a few collaborators held in good standing and the person negotiating for 225 is nothing more than a traitor as he was a sycophant happy to sell everyone out and there self respect. Something I made sure never to do,f or better or for worse in 225.
It sickened me how 225 allowed itself to be negotiated in such a way by this 'person'.To review :
An alliance comes in with the olive branch and takes out the 'enemies of 225' while also disrupting all communication between 225 players. After establishing dominance of the communication system they then start isolating players with veiled threats or 'misunderstandings' to which those players comply and are back in the happy seats with this new force. The 'strongest alliance of 225 ' somehow manages to get itself attacked by them (the new arrivals) and the sycophant known as Dive Pirate comes in and negotiates a peace.
The new force has for all intents and purposes taken over 225 and made everyone duck there heads and peer from beneath their blankets and hope they are not targeted. - with exception to yours truly.
Naturally despite being a very low level I managed to make myself KOS and a large number of the locals of 225 wish I would just fall in and kiss arse. I also earned a good number of /ignores.
A lot happened during that raid, I stood my ground while others did not. I very nearly quit the game and I repeat I was angry.
This was not me being a rage monkey they had genuinely managed to offend me as a person. and this being the level based game and my very limited PVP exsperience in BP I actually thought I could not win and that really peeved me off.
They really went to town on what I would consider unacceptable behaviour and comments.
How do you fight a force so powerful they came in out of the blue and used a few loose connections from before to first build trust and then dominate everything?
how do you fight them as an individual surrounded now by hostiles and sideline neutrals?Just a note here : This was the only time in Battle Pirates I felt near defeated.
I had to think very hard, for better or for worse I cannot surrender even when another part of me is screaming inside saying back down stop aurrender! There is a part that does not and that part upsets an awful lot of people. - do not take that as bravery I think it is a genetic flaw.
I went through everything they had done and said in my mind there had to be a weakness there had to be something I could outdo them with. How could I outsmart them using their own weapon but without force. I spent hours literally just recalling mentally what had happened and letting the brain do its job of working things out while another part discounts some things and puts other ideas on the 'good pile'. I knew the main weaknesses of the sector and that was the people on comms before the New Arrivals came.
Then the visions became clearer and I got my trademark grin on my face. The plan laid itelf out before me just as it had done many times before outside of this particular arena.
The key was secrecy but with only one comms which they can see and dominate at will with local backing I had to be very crafty. Using Disadvantage for Advantage...The Delta Agenda
The enemy was arrogant
they came in with arrogance and force and they had succeeded....for a short while.
I was seen now as the sector fool, the one who is not in the 'allowed circle' of 225. Very few people (if any) were comfortable in even saying hello to me.
This was a good thing, because it means I can be seen as an 'idiot' while building the foundation of what was to come. (Look up on Claudius it can be a huge advantage to be seen as very stupid).
Initially to communicate I used Morse Code on the comms. The New Arrivals (whom I shall now call The Undesirables) thought at least on the surface that I was goofing off on comms just spamming them with ... and --- in various combos. And so did the locals of 225 with exception to the ones I needed on side.
The ones who knew Morse Code / Military chaps. I would occasionally throw curve balls and just plant gibberish of random dee's and dar's.
When a member of the Undesirables would ask "what are you doing?" I would reply "Nothing for you to worry about
" And generally ignored them other than that. Everytime I said that they seemed to go quieter.What was the Morse Code?
Sometimes it was directions to a site with an additional code on it could be a completely random forums or just a visual. So those with a braincell would get an idea that I was coming and I was not mucking about.
Mostly it was vague references directly into the comms.
You may see the picture of Gandhi in my avatar, he was mentioned in them regularly. If he was a militant person he would have been a truly terrifying figure the world is lucky he was a good man.
Although the film take some liberties and outright lies (for example it is mentioned he has been celebate most his life which is not true the guy was very randy) it is a good artistic representation of him as a person. I urge people to read up on him and see what a real stubborn chap can achieve.
The people who understood the Delta Agenda knew that when the time came not to oppose my 'ideas' on comms but to quietly embrace them with a little bit of support when needed - not much as I wanted to get the sector on board not just the few,. Timing in crowd psychology is everything, you want to build it up like an orchestral piece as water to the dam. When it is ready to burst you pull the dam away and let the full force of the water through to its objective and it will hit it so hard all you have to do is sit back and watch it play itself out to the path you have created before it.
But first there was much work to be done in gaining a hostile sector's trust.
The key justification of The Undesirables was that they were here to help against the other sector.
A very noble cause that is too - even if it was one I disagreed with completely because the other sector in my experience was not much of a threat, prior to the Undesirables arrival I was being attacked by my neighrbous and people fought regularly each other and if you didnt have anyone 'vouch' for you on comms you could be farmed a ton.
BUT the Undesirables had used my 'hey people can do what they like in this game' against me initially to gain easy points against me with the crowd.
So I became what I know and called it Tactical Recon. I was now a Tactical Recon unit.
There was no more trolling or silliness from me, I had to put my mischevious and playful nature to a greater cause....The Unification of sector 225.
As Tactical Recon, my mission was simple : I do not hit in sector no matter what. No member of 225 regardless of what they do or say to me will be threatened or attacked by me. But more importantly anyone in 225 who is attacked from outside the sector will have my support both in defence and offence.
The Undesirables tried to bait me a number of times but I was not going to get side tracked I simply answered very straight. 'I am Tactical Recon my mission objectives do not allow me to fight in the sector' or 'This does not benefit 225' and other such phrases. I took a large part of my personality out and was a very straight TR Unit. Several joined up liking the idea (even if it was strange me going against my very nature of playing Battle Pirates in the first place, but this was War and I intended to win).
The enemy at this point was not 224 or 226 the enemy were The Undesirables and I would defeat them non violently.
Tactical Recon got farmed sometimes by the Undesirables and sometimes by the locals but we remained true to our orders and did not retaliate or complain.
Eventually The Undesirables moved on and I was now on somewhat stable ground.
The problem before was the enemy had been able to dominate the communication system and 225 as a sector was not united in any way. This was not helped by the 'big levels' not providing any advice and shouting down anyone who asked for it ie 'we learned the hard way so you can too!' and other stupid remarks.
225 also did not really identify itself as a sector, sure people knew they were in 225 and were loosely associated with each other but nothing solid.
226 used to mine in 225, so they had to be removed every time they were on 225 mines, sometimes took me all my fleets to sink one of there miners but I did it and gradually others did the same seeing 225 waters as their waters as members of 225.
The borders being established solidified the identity of 225.
Now to start forming it into a fighting force. 225 Strike Force News
I had to think on the name carefully, first we need to identify it for the sector and to make it official sounding.
There was a sector group before it had 7 people in it and was very exclusive and did next to **** all from what I could tell. When I asked about a sector group before the same big mouths/ big levels as usual said 'there is one find it yourself'.
Well it was about time I made one then for people to communicate outside the main comms, and for us to tell people of what we were doing to the enemy and post bases up and other helpful little things. Wasn't that nice of me, to think of a nice thing for the sector.
Anyways I got the name 225 strike Force News, first is for a collective identity that included as many people as possible, '225' then something punchy that sticks in the mind 'Strike Force'
But without making people feel obligated to do something, I wanted them to get the information build up there confidence see themselves as 225 and join in at will against the enemies of 225 that is 224 and 226.
It being a 'simple news' group with free information for all comers worked very well.
Especially for my generation of player who had enough of getting crappy answers on comms. In Comms we would say 'posted that base up on 225 SF' or if someone asked is 'so and so 225 or 226' we had a guy who listed every single player he could find in 224/225 and 226 with there coordinates and sector number for easier identification for legit targetting. We mentioned the 225 SF group regularly and this drew in more players.
Now what certain higher levels found was they were no longer being listened to and being ignored, because we saw how they reacted when faced with a bigger threat and how they spoke to us before. Now the lower levels were not reliant on them, we were reliant on ourselves - and especially myself.
I mentioned earlier about how a player had to be vouched on comms by a stronger player to prevent being farmed. for example :
Anybody know Louie?
Fine he is my new farm HA HA HA.
Sometimes if someone did vouch for them they too were targetted.
Now who do you think had the balls to start vouching for everybody?
Yep, it was me. Wasn't that nice of me to offer my personal protection to those idividuals.
I pretty much stopped insector hitting without needing to use violence. I became the guy that ended it in 225 and by now it was becoming clear Wulf was creating a stronger 225.
There is always a few fly's in the ointment and I secretly welcomed them as these simply made my passive way towards anyone in 225 the 'right' way. I was being seen as a very respectable person who cared deeply for the sector. There was a lot of fighting against the other sectors and when one of the flys decided to take a swing at me I made sure to time my complaint well - without complaining nor naming.
There was a sector scramble as 226 had launched an attack against us, I had just been flattened so I apologised for not being able to send my fleets to assist as my base had just been hit by the 5th column.
The person who had hit me aked what that meant, I said it was the WW2 equivalent of the Home Grown Terrorist.
He stopped being a fly and got on board, he turned into bit of an arse licker and showed his true colours again much much later on and as usual those sorts are defeated my way very effectively - more on that later on.
The other flys took notice of the 5th colomn remark and realized they were on very rocky ground especially as I am not pointing the fingers and nameing them. It occured to them I could have them farmed and despised by the sector at will - without me spelling it out to them.
The Big levels were by now all on board with the 225 Strike Force, some would claim later it was because of them it worked - which is bollocks. They had to join up or risk being the outsiders of their own sector. The lower levels (my generation) had seen what they had achieved (the big levels) and that was surrender. We were not for surrendering and we proved that with many of our fleets being sunk in the sector wars and still we carried on fighting and the big hitters were getting more successful as we provided the support fleets - there was truly some epic battles almost daily. It was like a mass riot and we all loved it.
A large part of the sector glue was all about the war with 224 and 226. and little ol' me sorting out insector disputes. Who was going to tell the guy head of a now powerful Navy to go frak himself?
I abolished the KOS for only serious threats and not individuals.
Before the TR a KOS could be called by a strong alliance or a popular person and people would see it as fine just farming them whatever the reason. Now I took that power away from them, I was the guy that could issue a KOS on anyone and I simply abolished it completely.
The power of who is good and who is bad rested soley on me, and I did it without using a single fleet against my enemies.
224 and 226 were not my enemies they were just very convenient as my neighbours.
When The Undesirables returned for easy Raid Prizes (this was in the days when only the top scorers in the sector could get a prize) and to do their mischief they found a unified sector under a benevelont ruler who had the full backing of a unified force.
It was quietly amusing watching them realize this little piggy was now for all intents and purposes the person they had to negotiate with over any 'misundertandings' of which there were far fewer this time round.
That is a part of Psychological Warfare against your enemies.