So that you know my take on this immediately, I argue that Montolio is the only sane person in this ended almost-conflict (even as people try to paint him otherwise), and I argue that Goonswarm has now become everything it once despised.
The Mittani has used his skills at propaganda to masterfully paint Montolio, the CEO of Test Alliance, as a madman, an insane leader bent on perpetuating a pointless and wholly damaging war. Nothing good can from this war, he argues, it will destroy friendships.
Yet, that seems like weak reasoning. Goonswarm has past bitter enemies in the CFC. Test has past enemies in the HBC. It would seem that war does not get in the way of out-of-game friendships. It seems that in-game conflict is kept wholly in context, and that laughs and beers can be happily shared afterwards.
The agitprop machine, themittani(dot)com used to full effect, and some diplo-mancy among economic cohorts, with this the almost-conflict winds down.
Shadoo came to the rescue and talked the crazy man from the ledge. That is, of course, how The Mittani and Shadoo (of Pandemic Legion) characterize the end of the crisis. They argue that nobody wants war, because EVE Online’s sovereignty mechanics are so terrible. It is probably true that EVE’s sov mechanics are terrible, but that didn’t stop three or four Goonswarm initiated wars during 2012.
The only reason why this war will not happen is because of technetium. The Mittani can try to spin it any way he wants. As crappy as the sovereignty mechanics in EVE Online may be, it certainly did not stop The Mittani from prosecuting several wars to capture more of New Eden’s technetium supply. And at least one war to protect the tech cartel he helped create.
Shadoo’s conversation with Montolio? It probably went something like this: “This war threatens our technetium moons. If that happens, Test will stand alone. If that happens, Pandemic Legion will side with the CFC. The Honey-Badger Coalition exists at our whim, not Test’s.“
What did Shadoo promise in return? Staged wars. Thunderdomes. Probably more miner and freighter ganking. Maybe a Jita Burns II. Engagements with rules. Conflict without meaning. And consensual warfare, the sort of thing Goonswarm used to cringe at, the sort of thing they used to mock.
Everything points towards technetium. Goonswarm and the CFC hold most of it. They do not want war. Pandemic Legion holds many moons of their own. They do not want war. Executive Outcomes, ally to both the HBC and CFC, holds technetium moons, they are willing to vacate HBC space so that their CFC holdings remain secure. They do not want war. The parties with the most to lose economically are the parties fighting hardest to avoid conflict.
Many point to the fact that Test is no match for the might of the CFC (including Pandemic Legion, because it’s a given that PL would vacate the HBC were war to break out.) That is true, if the war contains itself to only these parties, Test Alliance is very likely outmatched. But Goonswarm has many enemies. And if all-out war were to occur, many of those old enemies would recognize an opportunity. Nulli Secunda. Triple-A. Solar Fleet. CFC and friends would potentially face a many-fronts war. In that event, a Goonswarm victory is not assured. Goonswarm maintaining their chokehold on technetium would be severely threatened.
Mittens would have everyone believe, CCP included, that wars are not initiated for economic reasons, but for rage and hatred alone. Yet, what war in the last two years has Goonswarm not initiated for economic reasons? The only wars, in the past year, that were prosecuted because of an actual dislike and/or rage were between parties that did not include Goonswarm. Solar Fleet and Red Alliance. Any war in the new, nerfed drone regions could hardly be said to be for economic regions. And Test Alliance versus Against All Authorities. Any war in the south, again, it is difficult to make an argument for the economics.
So, sure. Some wars are initiated due to rage and hatred. That’s an argument The Mittani can make. Though it is not an argument he can make with respect to Goonswarm Federation. Goonswarm no longer does anything unless it is economically motivated.
So, the likelihood of a new Great War breaking out is getting slimmer by the day. Technetium would be at risk, and protecting tech is a strong conflict-avoidance motivator.
When Montolio despondently wrote:
I concede … It isn’t what I want, but it is what you want. I want war. I want gigantic fucking battles. I want to crash nodes because people are so fucking interested in this shitty game.
He showed us that he understands this game. That he understands what drives the grunts in their alliance and corporate patriotism. Conflict is what EVE Online is about. Unfortunately, among the great leaders of our time, it’s only Montolio who understands that any longer. Perhaps it’s because he has no great economic engine to protect, that he see war as beneficial. Perhaps if he were in The Mittani’s shoes, he too would start drifting towards carebearism. We can guess, but we can never know for sure. Either way, it is a great shame that he’s been so expertly marginalized.
Montolio is, perhaps, EVE’s last great “give no fucks” leader. People should consider rallying to his cause, rather than just swallowing the crazy man narrative that The Mittani has created for you all.
You can read more of Poetic Stanziel’s opinions at his Poetic Discourse blog.