Anyone who knows my writing knows I like contests. I like’em a lot. Most of the time, though, they’re dead serious or modestly tongue-in-cheek. This one is lunacy.

Capsuleer FMERCURY has launched what might be his own Alliance Tournament, if AT took place largely on YouTube, prioritized everyman players, and was run by Monty Python. A first prize of 7 billion ISK may attract serious competition, but FMERCURY has decreed that the best entrants will be accessible rather than blingy. His number one criterion seems to be chutzpah. The prizes reward video of solo PVP ‘or comparable shenanigans’ – no formal duels or special servers necessary. Entry requires little more than posting a video link on a specially made subreddit

That’s not to say there aren’t rules. Submissions will be…

…judged according to certain criteria, subject to arbitrary and unaccountable change by me (hereafter: The Architect) with no prior warning or justification. … They may be applied as capriciously and inconsistently as pleases The Architect. They are listed in order of importance, or perhaps no order at all.

Those judging criteria are:

  • Overall entertainment value
  • Ballsyness (risk)
  • Relatability (no bling)
  • Humor (subjective, but ‘The Architect’ has pretty obvious preferences)
  • Music (with poor choices incurring serious drawbacks)
  • Creativity

FMERCURY noted some additional guidelines. Submissions should be ten-to-fifteen-minute videos (with latitude for a couple of minutes over or under). They should focus almost entirely on solo PVP “or similar shenanigans.” They should depict “entertaining feats of skill.” They should be posted in the subreddit with the following title format: [date of submission](video title). One submission per player, please. Deadline is February 21st, 2018; winners will be announced February 28th.

‘The Architect’ has also seen fit to answer some clarifying questions from the peanut gallery. Most importantly, when asked whether submissions needed to have been made specifically for this contest, he said:

The spirit of the contest is to generate new content, but I won’t prohibit people from posting old stuff. However, consider the following: You are limited to one submission per judging period. With that in mind, you may wish to add to whatever previous work you’ve done. Part of the ‘entertainment value’ is seeing new stuff. Fights in which we know the outcome are less exciting.

That hasn’t discouraged entrants from submitting preexisting videos, some recent, some not. It may be too early to know for sure, but I see FMERCURY’s contest pulling in a deeply entertaining assortment of old and new content over the next couple of months. There aren’t many circumstances in which the solo PVP life interests me; this is apparently one of them.


Jenne Exupery

Jenne Exupery is a low-wattage independent who dabbles in shipping, salvage, trade, exploration, and nearly victimless heists. He can usually be found bumming around Derelik and Domain under one name or another. Preferred contact method: in-game mail to Jenne Exupery of Manticore-Horizon Shipping [MANHO].