The following article is an opinion piece by Curt Adrano and the views expressed are not necessarily reflective of Eve News24.


One of the key narratives of the ongoing war occuring across the South-East has been that many entities are actively taking steps to stagnate the game via setting blue, or bluetral, standings with each other. This narrative has been pushed by Triumvirate., Circle-of-Two and their allies, in which they fight against the combined forces of Legacy Coalition, Phoenix Federation and Drone Regions Federation, mockingly dubbed “the blue donut”. However, this is more than simply a narrative. CO2 and Tri have ruined their diplomatic ties with their allies, to the end of fighting against the so-called blue donut. One could speculate that this war comes as a direct result to the unrest amongst nullsec’s residents after the 2-week mid-Summer crisis which occured recently.

The growing blue donut on the East side of the map, as depicted on sov.space

Coalition blues

As has been covered here on EN24, Triumvirate. has suffered a failure of diplomatic relations over the course of the past half-year. They led Vanguard Coalition. However, each member alliance of Vanguard has progressively been kicked out due to a variety of reasons. The last remaining alliance in Vanguard, other than Tri, is Stella Nova which has now come under significant internal pressure. Although one could argue that each of the alliances left circumstantially, it is not normal for coalitions to bleed seven alliances in such a short space of time, and shows an increasingly desperate diplomatic situation as their ability to combat larger entities diminishes:

  • Invidia Gloriae Comes – Reset and evicted, by Vanguard, due to inactivity
  • Hell’s Pirates – Reset and evicted, by Vanguard, due to low activity and director-level drama
  • The Pestilent Legion – Reset and evicted, by Vanguard, because they did not keep to a rental agreement they were under with Tri
  • Manifesto. – Reset because leadership were caught making plans, with non-Vanguard alliances, if they were reset
  • The Bastard Cartel – Left to join Phoenix Federation after coming under pressure from hostile neighbours
  • Just let it happen – Reset and evicted by Vanguard due to low activity
  • Combat Wombat – Merged into Triumvirate after coming under pressure from hostile neighbours

In addition to struggling to hold their coalition together, Tri was also struggling to provide content to its own members. With blue, or bluetral, standings with Drone Regions Federation, Solar Fleet and friends, Phoenix Federation and other entities throughout the East, they had to travel to the South for consistent content. However, Legacy Coalition had recently invaded the South, with Vanguard’s assistance, replacing Stainwagon with entities such as Test Alliance Please Ignore, who were not as forthcoming with content. Once the major lack of content became apparent, they reset almost all of their blues and declared war on Phoenix Federation.

I am sympathetic to Triumvirate.’s situation. Ultimately, they want to be able to undock, PVP and crush anyone who would say otherwise with their massive Chimera blob. However, the actions of their leadership have only begun to reflect this in recent months. In order to get some perspective on how/why this blue donut was created, I did some digging.

Creating the blue donut

Shortly before Aegis Sovereignty hit, the East was embroiled in conflict: Solar Fleet and Triumvirate. versus Legion of xXDeathXx and allies. While Solar and Tri had made good progress, the war turned against them, so they sought a diplomatic resolution. Triumvirate. did this separately from Solar, however, and was caught between the two. Due to the fact that they had made a diplomatic agreement with XiX, they would have to fight their ally Solar should they not successfully come to an agreement with XiX of their own accord. This situation is eerily similar to the one faced by Test Alliance Please Ignore when Circle-of-Two began fighting in, and attempting to take, renter space in Feythabolis from Drone Regions Federation/Phoenix Federation whom they had made an agreement with.

Garst Tyrell, the leader of Triumvirate., took a lead in setting up diplomatic talks between Solar Fleet and Legion of xXDeathXx. You don’t believe me? Well, hear it from him in this lengthy forum comment that he made during diplomatic talks at the end of the war. Here is an excerpt:

The past few days I have instead spent in convo after convo trying to get XIX and SOLAR in the room with each other despite their years of bad bloods and feuding. This has been successful and the two sides have been talking. You will notice that TRI is still blue to both XIX and SOLAR and it my deepest wish that they can come to terms to end the war, and that SOLAR can remain in the area with the spoils of their own grind and campaign. Unless a deal is reached between the two, TRI will of course have no choice but to unfortunately reset SOLAR as part of honoring our new alignment with XIX and co. However that is not our preferred solution and I sincerely hope XIX and SOLAR can agree to peace after all these years of hatred.

V0LTA propaganda made after leaving Triumvirate.

For all Garst’s talk about blue donuts, and his fighting against them during this current war, it is his diplomatic work which was instrumental to starting talks between Solar and XiX, and in changing the landscape of the East to what it is today. He “sincerely hoped” for an end to the war and for good standings between its entities. Of course, as we now know, it worked out just that way. All entities involved managed to keep what space they had and set up blue standings (an article was written, about the end of this war and its events, by EN24 here).  XiX, Solar and Tri all set up renter empires across multiple regions in the East, in addition to their own living space. Garst’s decision to go along with this caused large internal strife within Tri, and it caused many corporations, and members, to leave over it (the existence of alliances such as WE FORM V0LTA are a direct result of corporations leaving Tri once their Triumvirate. became an ally of Drone Regions Federation). Tri could have opted to let some of the space they used for renting go to other groups which they could PVP with, but they did not. If Solar and XiX had never come to an agreement, the East may not be the blue donut that it is today.

An exodus of members from Triumvirate. after they set blue standings with Drone Regions Federation.

There used to be multiple neutral entities existing in Scalding Pass and Wicked Creek. However, as pressure increased between Phoenix Federation and Triumvirate.’s Vanguard Coalition many of them were evicted or joined up with either coalition, over the course of the time that Vanguard has spent in the East, more recently. This was yet another example of Tri contributing in burning their own sources of content and extending the blue donut.

As previously mentioned, Stainwagon was one of the last sources of consistent content available to Triumvirate., but that did not stop them from helping to burn it down. When Stainwagon was being invaded by Legacy Coalition, Triumvirate. was at the forefront in assisting Legacy. Cpt Patrick Archer, Triumvirate. Head Fleet Commander, even helped command the Legacy supercapital fleet.

Understanding Garst

With all that being said, it is unlikely that Garst ever intended for the Eastern blue donut to be how it is. When the deal between XiX and Solar was brokered, Fidelas Constans was still a member of the Imperium and had not created Phoenix Federation, and later join Drone Regions Federation, which would find its foothold South of Triumvirate.. Furthermore, Tri had exhuasted its wealth in the war, against XiX, and needed to build itself back up. The lack of content only really became apparent when it was too late, but to deny that Garst Tyrell, who is still leader of Triumvirate., and the diplomatic decisions that he made were not key to the current politcal climate in the East, and South, would be foolhardy. Basically, Triumvirate. is fighting the decisions that their leader has made; Garst is his own worst enemy.

Despite my pointing out the flaws in the overall Triuvmirate. narrative, there is definitely a serious issue in setting blue standings with almost the entirety of one side of the sovereign nullsec map, if you want to be able to have fun and PVP. It makes Triumvirate.’s quest for content quite reasonable, really, especially after looking at the way some of their former coalition allies went into the abyss of inactivity. Unlike Panfam (who control the North of the map), Drone Regions/Phoenix Federation have not allowed space for other people they can fight with. When they inevitably evict Triumvirate., I hope that they allow the space to become room for something along the lines of a fight club. There needs to be more space where people can PVP. Otherwise, the East will be blue with only a few exceptions.

 

Background of featured image credit: Razorien

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Curt Adrano is the CEO of Waking Dreams in Manifesto., and an editor at EveNews24.

Contact him at Curt#8110 on Discord.