Let’s take a look back at the end of an era. Not only have the great wars been silenced, but one of the greatest conflicts in EVE’s history has ended as well. The conflict between mostly Russian alliances; Legion of xXDEATHXx (X.I.X.) and SOLAR FLEET (Solar) raged over the last four years and included some historic fights that drew in alliances from all over EVE. With the end of Dominion sov, originally released in late 2009, the feuding enemies have decided let the past grudges go with Dominion in order to embrace the future.
Note the distinct ending to the Dominion Trailer, as “Dragon Fleet” enters the battlefield. X.I.X and Solar are among the groups depicted as “Dragon Fleet” [3:00 mark]:
You can imagine Mactep as the Russian Commander, and Edera Raine carrying out the order to “Burn them all.” Also note the uncanny resemblance of the voice of Talon Fleet’s FC and that of CCP Nullarbor.
Because EVE is an international game, news reporters face language, timezone, and cultural barriers covering the whole of EVE. This is especially true for the sizable Russian community that does not use English. Thankfully, Fafer, CEO of Tr0pa de Elite. and rental manager and military adviser for Brothers of Tangra (B0T) and X.I.X has stepped up to give us some insight into the conflict and the negotiated end to it.
For clarity here are some of the people you will read about:
Fafer – CEO of Tr0pa de Elite (manager of B0T renting alliance)
Edera Raine – Solar Fleet Diplomat (notable, winner of “Miss EVE-RU“)
Garst Tyrell – Leader of Triumvirate.
Mactep – Longtime Leader of Solar Fleet
UAxDEATH – Longtime Leader of Legion of xXDEATHXx
Karer – Second in command at Legion of xXDEATHXx
I Sam New leader of the Solar Fleet
Kira Kami Distinguished member of Solar Fleet
Hello Fafer, can you give us some background on the war.
This may be long read, so people can listen to this music that I like to relax myself with: [play music]
While there is historical background between the X.I.X and Solar conflict, and there were several Solar attempts at Drone Lands sov during last 2 years, we will fast-forward to the moment few months ago. Solar+BL. (Black Legion.) with allies were attacking X.I.X sovereignty, but PL (Pandemic Legion) swiftly made BL. retreat from the conflict, leaving Solar alone. After a few days of consolidation PL left the area and there were few weeks of uneasy peace. Following that, TRI (Triumvirate.) started to attack Etherium Reach, with Solar joining in order to make another attempt at Drone Lands sov, having their focus on Cache, Spire and Outer Passage.
TRI were slowly gaining, system by system, mostly uncontested or encountering weak resistance from the renters. That did not sit well with TRI leadership, as they were expecting more content from the X.I.X. Meanwhile X.I.X were fighting CO2 (Circle-of-Two) in Perrigen Falls over the MTO pocket, and due to changes in jump mechanics, were not able to fight on two geographically distant fronts. X.I.X allied entities and militias (such as AOF, P0CA, AA, SOD and others), slowed down the TRI progress during that period, as was possible by their capabilities.
However, the MTO conflict was resolved quickly, and X.I.X turned attention towards Etherium Reach and Cache. X.I.X was able to stand alone against combined enemy forces of TRI and Solar in the EU time zone (TZ) , however problem for X.I.X was TRI USTZ activities, as X.I.X had no USTZ presence at that time.
TRI and Solar attempted to capture system of LXQ several times, only to be met by solid defense from various combination of X.I.X, allies, NCdot (Northern Coalition.), and CO2 who came several times. Around that time, IRC (Intrepid Crossing) choose to join the forces with TRI and Solar.
Then, several key members of X.I.X leadership got RL (real life) matters to attend to that occupied their time, so X.I.X forces become less proactive and less present on the field. In retrospective, this was good development for X.I.X as it enabled their tired forces to rest, however at that time it represented a serious problem. The solution was found in hiring the Nulli Secunda (S2N) to fight against TRI in the USTZ and TRI+ SOLAR in the EUTZ. Nulli Secunda was evicted by PL from their sov in the east, and it was the circumstance that helped them to accept the X.I.X contract offer. Acquiring their services helped the X.I.X to achieve parity in the USTZ, too.
This situation lasted for some time, with TRI and Solar advancing in the USTZ, using distributed attacks against several regions, while combining fleets when possible. Notable was TRI and Solar use of small groups of supercarriers, or even solo, who were gateing around unopposed with minimal subcap support along with TRI usage of Rattlesnakes that enabled them to fight reasonably outnumbered many times.
Additionally, recently resurrected MC (Mercenary Coalition) was contracted too, in order to fill some gaps and perform special tasks. With that, a rich PVP arena was created in the area of Etherium Reach and The Spire that also attracted the attention of wormhole travel capable entities such as PL and NCdot, and in final stages of the war, Razor. PL and NCdot added to the content by coming either on their own and 3-waying the fights, or keeping to the sacred rule of respecting the temp blue for local forces who invited them and set a trap for enemy capitals and supers.
While Nulli and TRI were engaged in Etherium Reach, under the regular “airstrikes” by PL via the wormholes, Solar lost systems conquered in Oasa by combined forces of smaller entities; renters and with the help of NCdot airstrikes, which continued over the period of Solar residual advance in Outer Passage.
Finally, as absent X.I.X leadership members returned to the game, X.I.X become fully active again, and it was obvious that TRI and Solar would lose all territorial gains very soon, and lose the war. That helped diplomats to bring TRI and Solar to sit at the negotiation table and make a peace treaty with the X.I.X, which ended the war.
Tell us about the first steps in negotiations, the TRI – X.I.X treaty.
My corp was a member of the previous incarnation of TRI and we still have a lot of friends and connections inside. That enabled me to understand the TRI internal processes and mindset, and to have a chat with Garst Tyrell, the leader of TRI at the start of the war. We talked about passive income and different approaches to the game itself. I was also not happy with the fact that I needed to coordinate activities against my old alliance, however I also knew that with each problem there is also an opportunity. That is why I felt good when Garst poked me on the Skype, few months later, and from that moment on, the negotiations ended very fast in the deal that was presented to the X.I.X leader UAxDEATH and his second in command Karer. The deal may look surprising and counter-intuitive at the first glance to the casual observer. Perhaps it is best to quote Garst himself about the reasoning behind the Treaty [Garst’s statement].
Of course, this treaty left Solar Fleet alone, deep in the Drone Lands.
How did the X.I.X. – Solar treaty come to pass?
I can definitely recognize when someone has had a hard path, as my corp’s path was hard in the past, and Solar’s path was indeed one of the hardest, as Mactep, leader of Solar, said.
They had steady membership, and during their hardcore path did not significantly lose members like more typical alliances do when they lose a conflict. It is always a pleasure to fight such opponents, regardless of the outcome. The future was very clear at that moment, and that was Solar’s staging again in Konora. I felt a bit sorry for the Solar pilots as they had CTA’ed for nothing, again. I wasn’t alone in that sentiment, as Garst asked me about the possibility of making a peace treaty between Solar and X.I.X, and introduced me to Edera Raine, the diplomat of Solar. At first I wasn’t sure if my subconsciousness was playing games with my mind, as this sounded too good, but we started to talk. Since my days in White Noise, I knew the history of the conflict and I was very well aware that it was almost impossible to achieve such a treaty. Quick survey between X.I.X middle management and pilots only confirmed what I knew: it was not just the usual hostility, it was deep grudge. Same results on the Solar Fleet side. But, by that time I was invested and I did not want to let go easily, as a peace treaty between Solar and X.I.X would change the EVE landscape, and would be clearly advantageous to all sides involved. While Garst and Edera went to talk with Solar, I went to consult X.I.X leadership, and while skepticism was expressed, arguments in favor of such treaty could not have been ignored, so I got a tentative “go ahead” to continue with feasibility consultations.
Garst and Edera did not bring good news. Solar leadership was divided by different opinions, some of them fiercely opposed to the very idea of peace with X.I.X. Same opinion was prevalent in the ranks of the X.I.X leadership. Next few days went without any progress. A different approach was needed, so I decided that more personal contacts should be made, between various parties involved, and to talk to unrelated things in order for people to get to know each other better in order to attempt to break the vicious enchanted circle of mistrust. During that period Edera spent lot of effort to convince the skeptics on both sides, and her song about the home in Drone Lands helped a lot to understand the motivation of Solar pilots.
Slowly, a consensus started to emerge between the council of Solar directors, however there were strong reservations among many, so Edera once again made her magic like a true Witch of Dathomir, and I was able to chat with Mactep, with Edera as translator. That resulted with the start of official Solar-X.I.X leadership negotiations, which included I Sam (new leader of the Solar Fleet), and Kira Kami (distinguished member), for the Solar Fleet side, and UAxDEATH (leader of X.I.X), and Karer (second in command) from X.I.X side.
The reasoning behind the decision to start negotiating is best described by Mactep in his forum post, translated here [Mactep’s post].
The peace process was difficult, and lot of additional consultations were needed, first with Solar council of directors, and then with X.I.X high leadership.
Finally, a miracle happened! An anonymous author, or group of authors, released this statement: [Peace Agreement]
SOLAR FLEET SotA [Audio Recording]
Special thanks to Redwyne Vyruk (B0T and X.I.X rental manager) for materializing the standings list in a matter of minutes, and to the rest of Tr0pa de Elite. for all the background work.
So the future of Drone Lands includes renting?
Indeed, entire area is opened for the renting. B0T and X.I.X have systems ready to rent out, and TRI and Solar are following. Space is mostly consolidated, so we all hope to offer good old Drone Lands experience and service to our customers.
Any thoughts on the ancient conflict, the last big one of the Dominion era?
Last Dominion war was beautiful arena of multidimensional warfare, with main sides in the conflict, and additionally the mercenaries, smaller entities and 3rd parties. Unlike other wars in the past, everybody is victorious this time: defeated parties did not end up in lowsec, but instead with space. Mercenaries fulfilled their contracts, smaller entities enjoyed the asymmetrical warfare and got rewarded, and 3rd parties got the content. Above all, it was fun for everyone. The content and the outcome is fitting for the end of an era, and represents a gift from myself and people who worked on this to all who participated.
A song to leave you with: [music]