Usually threads involving paperless conversations end up in a lot of shit-posting so per request of what my next blog should be about, what is paperless was suggested. Simply put paperless is having an alliance structured around the idea that you have no official treaties with the exception of protectorates.
Protectorates get an exception in this case because the point of a protectorate is to dissuade alliances from attacking the one being protected. If you look at an alliance in the 30's ranking and see they're protected by someone your far less likely to want to raid them. The power in the protectorates protection comes from its existence being known.
Now to the meat of it all. With VE's recent jump to paperless, lets focus on that for a moment. VE could become paperless and not move what-so-ever on the political spectrum if they so wished. They could still back up Rose in the next war, and Rose could back them up if need be. But in the same vein they're not honor-bound to fight a large war that doesn't match up to their desires. The problem with treaties is time, in my opinion. Usually in the phases leading up to signing a treaty the activity between alliances is very high, one side is typically courting the other in a manner of speaking. Once the treaty is signed there's a honeymoon period where everything is great and your talking. Then a few months in your like an old married couple who only seem to talk to one another when there's a fight about to happen. The romance is dead. This is what spawned the concept of paperless for me. Without that piece of paper, should relations fall off or have highs and lows, you can act on what is right for you at that time. You could fight more, fight less, and the repercussions of your actions are yours and not several other alliances.
Lets say an alliance your friendly with takes an action you don't like for war, you can support them, not, go against them. Should you support them it would be because you feel committing to a war you don't agree with is worth the relationship between alliances at this time. Should you not, you risk your relationship souring with said alliance. And obviously should you go against them you might face their wrath. You can make the decision based on what is right for your alliance, not because you committed to banging 7 months ago before they went bat shit crazy and starting RPing a snake, or something. I typically hate treaties that have been around forever, that you just keep because you have had them for so long. Don't act a certain way because you've had a treaty forever, act for what is best for your alliance and alliances you deem worthy of your support. What is best for your alliance can change quickly, and what alliances you support also can as well. Paper chokes this process. Paperless helps give you the option to pivot easier, however it's still not easy.
Paperless alliances require strong, active leadership. You have to keep up with lots of alliances simply for the sake that your friends one day might be against you on the battlefield the next (even if they remain friends). It's also a lot riskier. Should you make a major misstep and get your alliance dog-piled, there will be few people lining up to bail you out because there will be little political pressure for them to do so from outside sources. You won't get people trolling you for not honoring a treaty, or not supporting a side people believed you should like recent examples with Alpha (when tied to Rose/tS) and TKR (when tied to NPO was it?). This fits that paperless suits a proactive leadership style, and PnW-wise a proactive military style. You want to be the one on the attack.
I could go on, and maybe I will in a follow-up blog but lets try to wrap this one up. Paperless is very much like paper, it's just not out in the open like everyone else and you can change where you stand much easier. You need the right people to do it well, and need to be an alliance that stands by your word because that's all you have, your reputation. I find the best way to do it is talking to people about possible scenarios and where you stand so your friends and enemies alike know where you stand on issues, because your enemies might become your friends and vice versa quicker than you think. Or not. It's really up to you and your alliance, which is why I like this system more than the traditional.
With Caecus writing several entries about TEst a couple weeks ago, I figured I'd create my own little blog to write about the real TEst. First things first, the TEst I lead is different than the real TEst. Jodo and ElPinchazo (and probably Phiney) can only be the leaders of the real TEst as they've lead the alliance during the longest periods of time. The real TEst is slightly less concerned about the world around them and more willing to throw caution to the wind and march to their own beat. The TEst I lead is similar to that but I'm a bit more pragmatic and keep more channels of communication to other alliances. Neither is superior to the other, I simply took what I could from TEst and and added it to what I see as my strengths as a leader. Combine my strengths with TEst's play style as best as you can and you have the current Terminus Est.
My goal for this alliance is simple, give the members what they want. TEst has been involved with 4 (5 if you count Arrgh) wars since I took over, Alpha, GPA, Pantheon, and TFP. All four of those alliances were targeted for a combination of reasons. First, one thing all four have in common is being atop our "who do we want to fight", poll. It's funny when you look at those threads because it's less about wanting to fight someone because you dislike them, and vastly more about who would be a good fight. At the time of each, really, all of those alliances had the one of the most impressive top tiers at the time. When we decided on Alpha, about a month later we felt reason was given enough through that whole debacle with Sparta and the fake logs drill which resulted in a plan to roll TEst by several alliances, which resulted in those Rose forum leaks about them getting the impression they wanted to roll TEst regardless. That combined with being atop of our bingo list, we attacked. We teamed up with Syndicate who also had their own reason for attacking which kept them engaged much longer than us, as TEst often leaves shortly after the conventional warfare wraps up. GPA and TFP we hit because they had big neutrals, and TFP was right after Pantheon so it made it easier to just do it then since everyone was still itching for more fighting. Pantheon was hit for two reasons, like Alpha they were atop out bingo list (the list gets re-voted after every war with the previously rolled alliances excluded) and second we were paid. I'm not going to say who paid but someone took us up on this thread.
It's really an interesting thing, how we operate. We don't fight for political reasons, except to maybe make some new friends through bloodshed. We really don't take things too seriously and are an alliance that keeps their word. We willing to work with most anyone if they've something worth fighting for, money in some cases and shared interests in others. We're just here to have fun, so feel free to stop by and shoot the shit with us. https://discord.gg/z2BWuzV
"Prefontaine and his band of merry idiots" - Hereno