This month topic is brought to us by L'Dene Bean of Nitpickin's who asks: Why, and how did you pick your corporation? Is your loyalty solid or just until a better placed organization "recruits" you. The shorter version: Who holds your Unshakable Fealty and why?
I am proud to say that my loyalty to Greenbeard's Freebooters is nearly seven-and-a-half years strong.
For pretty much the entirety of the existence of EVE Online, Seismic Stan has been a member (and currently CEO) of Greenbeard's Freebooters. It's become a badge of honour as I would imagine it's fairly rare to see a character in-game so old with only a single corporate affiliation. On a related note, Greenbeard himself has exhibited significantly less devotion to his own organisation, which is why his official title has for a long time been 'scurvy turncoat'.
Undoubtedly, it has on occasion become restrictive. There have been times when I have been tempted by other offers and the final decision has come down to my unwillingness to ruin my unbroken streak. You may think such blind loyalty is stupid, and to an extent you're probably right, but there is one simple reason for my unswerving fealty.
In a game whose developers appear to delight in coaxing the darkest and most sociopathic deeds from it's playerbase in an environment that actively encourages duplicity, deception and theft, creating an island of trust is priceless. Greenbeard's Freebooters is a corporation comprising only real-life friends of over two-decades and this creates a fundamental bond of trust that protects us from and trivialises any EVE-based maliciousness.
For a time though, it wasn't always that way. Greenbeard's Freebooters was originally created in 2003 as an 'alt-corp'. The corporation's primary purpose was to allow players from a number of allied corporations (anyone still out there from Arachnid Industries, Blackstar Mining or Beyond Worlds?), to occasionally do shady things with backup characters without any detriment to our mains (with whom we'd be busy mining, manufacturing, missioning and all other things carebear). I have faint memories of assorted griefing and harassment activities that took place with varying degrees of success.
However as time progressed and players came and went, our taste in play-styles shifted. With every expansion New Eden evolved, rules changed, alliances rose and fell, agreements were forgotten and somewhere along the way our alts became our mains. It was never really by design, but only those of us who knew each other in real-life remained. After a period of inactivity we returned to New Eden and it turned out that playing the roles of a rag-tag bunch of ne'er-do-well space bums was just far more fun than dull rock-mining industrialists.
We've stumbled along quite happily ever since, the only flaw with our insular little EVE bubble is just that, it's a little insular. Which is nice for the most part, but EVE is a social game where numbers count so sometimes it's good to have some friends. We've attempted to remedy this on a couple of occasions by joining alliances, but for reasons documented elsewhere on this blog, it's never quite worked out for us.
So we're going to try a different tack and attempt to expand Greenbeard's Freebooters, throwing open the doors of active recruitment for the first time in over half a decade. We'll be looking for just a few folk who don't take their EVE gaming too seriously, aren't easily offended and think that they could fit in with the Freebooters. We have just rejoined Factional Warfare under the Amarrian flag and as we're UK-based, our EVE prime-time is 1900-2300 EVEtime, which would be the most likely time we'd get a squad together.
If you think you fit the bill, drop into the OLD POND PUB channel for more details. Feel free to chat to the folks in there. Most of them won't be any help, but they're quite funny.