Legacy’s Move to Delve: A Brilliant Move, or Something They’ll Regret?

2021-03-14

Header art by Major Sniper

[Editor’s Note: Seir Luciel is a staff writer at INN and a member of Pandemic Horde. Gray Doc is an editor at INN and a member of the Imperium]

Gray Doc: When I first heard that Legacy was planning on moving to Delve, which was in a Legacy SOTA sometime in November, I could hardly believe the hubris. However, it did make other incomprehensible things clear:  What was the “real” strategy behind the war? Legacy’s message on that point shifted like the recent price of Gamestop shares. But after that “move to Delve” declaration, I understood that behind all the rhetoric of “extermination” and “Goons are bad for the game,” what we actually have here is a land grab. Delve is some of the best area of space in the game, Legacy wanted it (especially TEST, as other Legacy groups will get Querious and Period Basis and therefore act as meat shields). They couldn’t get it by going to war with Imperium themselves, so they formed PAPI, to have folks like PH, FRT, and FI:RE help them do what they could not do on their own.

Seir Luciel: I think the planned move was for many reasons, not just one. One of them is, yes, to get more land and especially Delve. Delve is good space. It is one of the reasons Goons moved there in the first place. I think anyone would want to have it if they could. But that’s not the only reason. 

Another thing the move accomplishes is political. If wars don’t result in some kind of resource redistribution, they start looking pointless; especially a big one like this. “Why did we do all that fighting to end up in the same spots that we started in?” a Legacy member might ask. But this doesn’t just go for Legacy and this current war. If wars don’t give victors something to show for their effort, they aren’t wars, they’re sports. EVE wars demand consequences, actual losses and gains, actual losers and winners, to be meaningful. 

A third reason, I believe, is either a reaction or a prediction of the Goon rhetoric: “We are still here! You didn’t win the war, you just wasted your time! Look how great Goons are; the whole map can’t wipe us off it!” Goons make a significant point by saying this, one not to be minimized. It’s also a point that demands a response. Legacy has to move into Goon space to prevent that narrative, otherwise their return home after smashing Delve could be spun as a retreat. “They gave up and turned home! We have victory!” Goons would say. 

So, in sum, the move accomplishes three things: it grabs land; it applies consequences to the victory making the war meaningful and not just for sport; and it prevents Goons’ ability to say they fended PAPI off while watching them retreat.

Gray Doc: Let me respond to those three reasons one at a time. The first, land grab: yep. But note that wasn’t the stated reason at the beginning. In the business world, some call that the bait-and-switch technique. Legacy got all PAPI onboard, then shifted the goalposts and revealed the true goal:  claim Delve, Querious, and Period Basis for Legacy while Panfam gets “diddly squat.” Second, “something to show for their effort.” Phhhhhft.  What will PH, which you are a member of, have to show for your effort? I feel like stopping here for you to respond to that one right now. What will you, PH line member, have to show for this war? Please remember your own words: “If wars don’t give victors something to show for their effort, they aren’t wars, they’re sports.” Respond: Don’t wait for the translation!

Seir Luciel: I’ll get to this idea of “shifted goalposts” in a second. But I can say that I don’t really see the move as a bait-and-switch so much as a condition of wiping Goons out. It’s not a bait-and-switch to tell PAPI that they will, in fact, also have to fight to take out Goons. It just comes with the deal, politically and militarily. I don’t see the move as anything different in this way. 

What does Horde get out of it? I think Horde is in an interesting position in the war. Because Horde isn’t getting land in the same way, obviously they are in it for different reasons. This is one of the reasons Goons look so intently Horde’s way, hoping they will be the ones to leave first. Goons betray a deep hope, even a last hope, that Horde will leave the war and go back home. Goons would then only have to deal with a solitary Legacy, someone they have more confidence in being able to defeat under such conditions.

What will Horde show for the war? A longstanding enemy, one respected and feared, will no longer be what it once was, not for a long time and maybe never again. Different PAPI members joined this war for different reasons: some political (Brave); some militaristic (TEST); and some for historical reasons. I put Horde in this last category. It is a bit of an oversimplification to apply one reason only for each alliance/corp in PAPI, but as I see it these are the foremost reasons in the examples I’ve given.

Gray Doc: Well, you didn’t really answer my bait-and-switch point. It IS a bait-and-switch to say the war is about “exterminating” Goons, but later to say it’s about Legacy moving to Delve. But I’ll let that go. 

Regarding what Horde gets out of it, let me see if I can parse what you are saying: Goons will be vastly, and possibly permanently, disabled. OK. But that same point should apply to Legacy as well; however, you are making a big point (see above) that Legacy HAD to move to achieve success. You are, yourself, shifting your own logic so much I can’t follow it. Legacy HAD to take over Delve to achieve success, but Horde doesn’t have to. Well, maybe this makes sense to PAPI folk, but not to me. And now on to your idea that Imperium looks to Horde with hope: “Help me, Gobbins Wan Kenobe! You’re our only hope.” Speaking only for myself, I hold out no hope that Horde will leave, nor does it matter. Eventually, unless the blue donut is to remain forever and Tranquility become Serenity 2.0, which I’ve written about elsewhere, Horde will have to worry about FRT or Legacy, so that move back home will come sooner or later. I don’t care much when that happens, because it is a certainty, and then, Legacy can face what’s left of Goons by themselves. ::Chuckle, chuckle.:

Seir Luciel: Horde is coming out of this war better than many others in PAPI. Very little has been done to Horde space, very little done to their industry and the ability to make income. If the war ended right now, how would things look? Who comes out behind, and who comes out ahead? Compare the relative positions of the major powers involved in the war as they currently stand, and tell me where Horde comes out. Think about it for a bit and it will start to make sense – why Horde is playing its particular role in the war. A great way to find out why powers do the things they do is to look at the results of their actions. Most of the time, these results were the reasons. 

I will make a comparison to the U.S. in WWII. The United States joined the war (yes, only after they were attacked in ‘41) but gained very little territory for their efforts, despite having their rapidly generated military machine moving all around the world, through Europe, etc. (They do get some territory in the Pacific: the Philippines for example.) What did they gain? After the war they became the largest military and economic power on the globe. This was mainly due to the fact that Europe’s infrastructure had been demolished while the U.S.’s was untouched. Cities like London and Dresden are bombed, but not New York or Los Angeles. Europe and the Axis powers had to start building up from rubble, whereas the U.S. could move into the post-war period hitting the ground at full speed. Also, their newly-fashioned military industry (i.e. threat of force)—larger than anyone else’s, due to the reasons stated above—allowed them to strongarm much of the political world afterward. The only real resistance was by the Soviet Union, hence the Cold War. 

Legacy isn’t fighting the same kind of war, but is following a different kind of pattern. Their conflict, structurally, is more a settler-colonialist war from the 1500’s: think Spain’s move into central America in search of gold (Delve). The conquistadors not only moved into the indigenous population’s land, but also killed them off in the process. Not a pretty part of history, and it is certainly understandable the kind of pain Goons are feeling right now, especially if we compare them to the Aztec and Incan empires being invaded by the Spanish.

Gray Doc: First, regarding who comes out ahead: Fraternity, obviously. You may come out far ahead of Imperium, but at the cost of allowing a different competitor to gain an edge on PH. They’ve gained new space to rent and they lost zero titans in M2, and also had zero titans trapped in M2-XFE. Of course, you can always try to form another blue donut to attack FRT. That seems to be the “go to” strategy now.

Regarding your conquistador reference, I’m surprised you went there, but it’s quite apt. How does it feel to be on the side of the conquistadors?

Cue the music! Push “play” on Procol Harum!

Conquistador your stallion stands in need of company

And like some angel’s haloed brow

You reek of purity

I see your armor plated breast

Has long since lost its sheen

And in your death masked face

There are no signs which can be seen

Songwriters: Gary Brooker / Keith Reid

Seir Luciel: I’ll meet your song with a Homeric metaphor:

“And hard as it was to recognize each man, each body, 

with clear water they washed the clotted blood away

And lifted them onto wagons, weeping warm tears.

Priam forbade his people to wail aloud. In silence

They piled the corpses on the pyre, their hearts breaking,

Burned them down to ash and returned to sacred Troy [1DQ].

And just so on the other side Achean men-at-arms

Piled corpses on the pyre, their hearts breaking,

Burned them down to ash and returned to the hollow ships [in T5Z].”

The Iliad, Book VII

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Comments

  • Havish Montak

    Biggest mistake they have ever made. I will always live in Delve and hunt them. NPC stations yo in a worst case scenario.

    March 14, 2021 at 10:30 AM
    • Moomin Amatin Havish Montak

      I will not always live in Delve. But I will live there long enough to make sure that TAPI regret it (which should not be long given the things they say to me in local).

      March 14, 2021 at 7:00 PM
  • kwnyupstate .

    Moving to an area like Delve in the era of scarcity is the biggest dumbest move ever. Someone rope-a-doped them (Ali) to Delve I think. Losing tons of titans/supers and if they actually win losing even more to achieve that FOR DELVE is hilariously stupid..

    March 14, 2021 at 2:48 PM
  • Gammon and spinach.

    March 14, 2021 at 4:59 PM
  • Moomin Amatin

    Given the TAPI decisions throughout this war I would say this move was one of the better ones. At least this one is clearly stupid and no one should be on board with it…. Oh wait! From the people that brought you “pre-staged” and “the M2 in cyno is perfectly positioned” we now have “move to Delve, everything is fine!”.

    March 14, 2021 at 6:59 PM
  • Guilford Australis

    It seems clear at this point that Horde has become entangled in someone else’s forever war without a plan to withdraw or accomplish a decisive victory. Gobbins told his alliance months ago that the only remaining objective was to sack 1DQ, which by happenstance is the system *right next door* to his current staging. But then he announced a couple days ago that he actually plans to grind through 26 more Keepstars elsewhere in Delve before getting around to that. So I guess he plans to have his alliance live in Delve along with virtually the entire population of nullsec for about five more years until they finally manage to snipe the 1DQ I-Hub.

    The messaging from PanFam over the past nine months has been positively delusional. They seriously think The Imperium is going to be permanently crippled by this war? Were these people born yesterday? The current war is a slow-motion joke of a farce compared to the Casino War. We lost *everything* in 2016 and rebuilt within a year. It has taken PAPI – which, let’s remember, outnumbers The Imperium three to one – nearly a year to destroy about 15% of our Keepstars and a handful of Sotiyos, and they’re actually boasting about permanently weakening The Imperium? Holy fark.

    Let’s also not forget that one of the original reasons PAPI put forth for this war was that The Imperium is too big and too powerful, and that’s bad for EVE don’t-you-know. Now PAPI controls roughly 90% of conquerable nullsec, and the too-big Imperium controls about 0.5%. These hypocrites can get bent.

    March 15, 2021 at 2:18 PM
    • Seir Luciel Guilford Australis

      I’m in favor of the structure grind and saving 1DQ for last. One of the things we saw during the M2 hellcamp is that while the Imperium stays too focused defending a specific area they are weaker in being able to defend and fight over other areas. We heard this expressed by imperium fc’s themselves: now they feel a lot freer.

      Same rule applies. Saving 1DQ for last does a few things. One, it takes a long time but isnt too hard or stressful when they are undefended. Two, it is taking away places for imperium to dock up, set up for flanks, etc. in essence it is eliminating safe zones on the board. Three, it puts political pressure on goons to respond or do something more than they are. Seeing zkillboard perpetually of structures destroyed for nothing is hard for anyone. Goons ought to be praised for keeping morale up, but everything I’ve heard said the end of M2 was a bit of a blow. Saving Delve for last makes final boss sense, and is perhaps the morale strategy for PAPI.

      The drawback is obviously that the wars goes on longer, and the challenge to keep papi engaged. So far thats been the case, but theoretically it could change. Its true. We could just go for 1DQ now. Certainly goons have been saying “your taking too long!” for a while now. Typically its not smart to do the thing your enemy is taunting you into doing. It seems like this is a situation in which patience is gonna pay off more than restlessness. And besides, 1DQ is gonna be, likely, the biggest this game will ever see. Everyone’s excited for it. It’s one of the things that’s making 1DQ worth the wait.

      March 15, 2021 at 3:17 PM
      • Gray Doc Seir Luciel

        I like the “final boss” analogy, so I ask you. Are you one that always saves the final boss for last? That never tries to take on the final boss far too early? Or are you one that goes in underleveled, takes on Ceasar at level 9 without either good armor or good weapons? Lots of players don’t like to play it safe, but I guess most of those ended up in Goons.

        March 15, 2021 at 4:24 PM
        • Seir Luciel Gray Doc

          Leave my Fallout New Vegas play-styles out of this.

          Although to engage with your example it took me many tries and many deaths to get it right. Lots of re-loading. EVE doesn’t give you the option to reload if you make a mistake. M2 anyone? So I am much more eager to play it safe in this game than in some others.

          March 15, 2021 at 4:29 PM
          • Gray Doc Seir Luciel

            You and so very many other PAPI members.

            March 15, 2021 at 4:35 PM
      • Moomin Amatin Seir Luciel

        1DQ is the only thing that mattered in this war of extermination when it came to territory. For 1DQ to stand it will mean PAPI will have failed. PAPI have to take 1DQ now and every single member of The Imperium knows it. The world watches as PAPI hope for The Imperium to just leave. But The Imperium has nowhere to go. PAPI made it very clear at the start of the war that it was to stop The Imperium from existing. PAPI doubled down on this for months and months. There is no way for PAPI to undo all that they have said in this war.

        March 15, 2021 at 6:22 PM