Good Afternoon eAustralia,
In all the talk of which personalities are which cabinet leading up to the election just gone, we missed an important chance to talk about Game Theory - that is, what policies are best suited to the game itself.
In the last few days I've been looking closely at how treaties fit into the game of eRepublik. I've concluded that they don't fit.
First of all, let's make one thing clear, the last 'treaty' signed between eAustralia and eChile was not in fact a treaty at all. The more accurate term was Conditional Surrender.
Surrender is the cessation of fighting by soldiers, naval craft, nations or other combatants and their eventually becoming prisoners of war, either as individuals or when ordered to by their officers. A white flag is a common symbol of surrender, as is the gesture of raising one's hands empty and open above one's head.
When the parties agree to terms, the surrender may be conditional, i.e. if the surrendering party promises to submit only after the victor makes certain promises.
It was ironic that Mick Gatto (TJ Norton) said on the forums that some people were playing the game like it was still 2009.
That is correct... those who created the 'Conditional Surrender' between eAustralia and eChile under the Greg MacGregor Government were in fact trying to apply 2009 logic in 2012/2013.
For n00bs, back in 2009, eRepublik version 1, the game itself allowed countries to make treaties or individual to make contracts (for companies, orgs, etc...) and that could be submitted with eRepublik admin.
Each treaty/contract would contain a hefty financial penalty if ether party broke it. So if eRepublik admin upheld a complaint that a country broke the treaty, it could almost send a nation broke! There was a hefty price to pay.
We now live in 2013 and eRepublik admin now longer monitor/judge treaties/contracts. They haven't done so for almost four years.
So it puzzles why we have players using 2009 logic and trying to negotiate a Conditional Surrender with an enemy.
The fact is there is no honest broker. There's no one there to ensure fairness and punish those who break the contract.
Furthermore, Conditional Surrender kills baby-booms and goes completely against how the game is promoted.
Image taken from the first page seen by those signing up to play
The features outlined be the eRepublik company itself are promoting war, this is different to how the game was promoted in 2009.
When many of us older players joined the game, the economy wasn't broken (companies were successful), you could publish your newspaper in any country (boost your chance for a media mogul medal) and you or your party could run ads that were displayed on the right hand side of the page (handy in trying to get elected).
The game then was promoted on it's many different aspects. You could succeed in business, politics or media. War as just an additional element.
Now, in 2013, eRepublik are pushing the war element more than ever. Just look at the page n00bs first see when they type in eRepublik.com - it shows a French Flag being planted near London Bridge. It's suggesting to new player this is a game based on war. Try and conquer other countries if you can.
There worse thing a new player can experience is joining a country like eAustralia to discover that we have signed a Conditional Surrender and cannot attack any of the countries around us.
Training war I hear someone say? That's no good. It's like playing the beginner's level of a new video game over and over again. There's no challenge. In any game you want to try and step it up a level. Even if you lose, you had fun testing your skills and you learn a little more each time.
So this is where Fingerguns might chip suggesting we want a scorched earth policy... well...
eRepublik is now designed to make you want to fight more and more.
There are war missions you have to complete. Discounts to buy more gold, thus more weapons. Higher quality weapons for bigger damage. Plus as pointed out above, advertising aimed at n00bs focusing on the war element.
At the end of the day, eRepublik is a Profit Making Company where war is good for business. The more damage done by one side, means the more gold that needs to be purchased (hello Visa and Mastercard) by another to fight buy. That equals more money for eRepublik and it's investors.
Conditional Surrenders are bad for business. They mean less fighting, which means less gold purchased, meaning less money for eRepublik and it's investors.
Start to get the picture now?
There was a troll comment by someone from eArgentina the other week that was actually very insightful.
They said "When are you going to start playing the game eAustralia".
Our enemies already understand it and we don't. One thing you can set your watch to is that eIndonesia will always attack eAustralia every few months.
Why? Because it's an easy victory, restores their 'pride' (ego), makes the game fun for them and help produce baby-booms.
eIndonesia (or eChile or eNZ) making friends/allies with us is bad news for them. If they cannot attack us, that's one less chance for war and one less chance for an ego boost. They NEED eAustralia fighting for the other team so they have a challenge and something to get excited about.
That's why during the election campaign I was talking about making new allies (eChina, eTaiwan, etc...) and taking it up to our enemy neighbours.
It makes the game FUN! Even if you or your allies are losing battles, it gives a nation something to focus on and get behind. It creates a storyline and when you finally do win, how much sweeter that victory is.
So next time you see a candidate want to talk negotiations and make a Conditional Surrender ask them, do you know how to play this game mate?
Founder, Senator and Party President of the Green and Gold Party
What is this?You are reading an article written by a citizen of eRepublik, an immersive multiplayer strategy game based on real life countries. Create your own character and help your country achieve its glory while establishing yourself as a war hero, renowned publisher or finance guru.