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Talk about regional management and politics, raider/defender gameplay, and other game-related matters.
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Japanese Schoolgirls
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Founded: Aug 20, 2015
Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Japanese Schoolgirls » Tue Sep 03, 2019 10:59 am

Didn't know until now that Todd McCloud actually published books! The more you know when reading these.
유애나 | YOU & I

| Community is my name and community-building is my game |



H A L L Y U S A N C T U A R Y

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Jar Wattinree
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Psychotic Dictatorship

Postby Jar Wattinree » Tue Sep 03, 2019 2:52 pm

An excellent issue, delivered on time and with no subverted expectations.
  • Governor of Province Ardere
  • Praetorian of the New Pacific Order
  • Council Elder of St Abbaddon
  • Game Warden of Forest
Tribune of the New Pacific Order
November 28, 2018
A 14.4 - 4.11111111 civilization, according to this index.


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Escade
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Founded: Apr 11, 2013
Ex-Nation

Postby Escade » Tue Sep 03, 2019 6:00 pm

Davelands wrote:What a great set of interviews! It's an honor to be included with the others!


Thanks! Good luck on upcoming events :)

Bhang Bhang Duc wrote:
Davelands wrote:What a great set of interviews! It's an honor to be included with the others!

Agreed!


I don't know if others see it but I like seeing connections between the people I interview (favorite things\hobbies\etc) and a lot of those inspire future pieces. Like Terry Pratchett!

Japanese Schoolgirls wrote:Didn't know until now that Todd McCloud actually published books! The more you know when reading these.


It's really impressive especially since it's a planned quintet. There are actually a few NSers now who I've met who write or draw or sing or have such amazing and creative talents. One of my fave players has a WIP that is startlingly awesome and it should be published.

The roleplaying community itself has so much talent, they write more than entire books and series sometimes on the RMB or forums.

Jar Wattinree wrote:An excellent issue, delivered on time and with no subverted expectations.


And thanks again for all your editing help and the quality of being so precise <3
Last edited by Escade on Tue Sep 03, 2019 6:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Todd McCloud
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Founded: Oct 11, 2006
Civil Rights Lovefest

Postby Todd McCloud » Tue Sep 03, 2019 6:39 pm

These were all very fun to read!
"Your uniform doesn't seem to fit. You're much too alive in it."

"You must be the change you want to see in the world" - Gandhi
"The worst prison would be a closed heart." - Pope John Paul II

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Chingis
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Founded: Apr 04, 2016
Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Chingis » Sat Sep 07, 2019 4:13 am

Looks great Escade!

The link to the dispatch version of Sylven's thingy is mislinked to Lynxi :P

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Your Imaginary Friend
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Posts: 88
Founded: Jan 17, 2017
Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Your Imaginary Friend » Sat Sep 07, 2019 6:52 am

Chingis wrote:Looks great Escade!

The link to the dispatch version of Sylven's thingy is mislinked to Lynxi :P

That's because we're sekritly the same.
Managing Director, Lazarus
Also known as Sylven in another life...

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Escade
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Founded: Apr 11, 2013
Ex-Nation

Postby Escade » Sun Sep 08, 2019 10:47 am

Chingis wrote:Looks great Escade!

The link to the dispatch version of Sylven's thingy is mislinked to Lynxi :P



Oooh yikes! I think I got them all corrected! Thanks, Chingis :)

Your Imaginary Friend wrote:
Chingis wrote:Looks great Escade!

The link to the dispatch version of Sylven's thingy is mislinked to Lynxi :P

That's because we're sekritly the same.


Well you both can sing but like one is slightly more into ponies and the other into wolves :P


In other updates, Todd's second book is now available -> https://www.nationstates.net/page=dispatch/id=1256542

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The Glitter Queen Aynia
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Founded: Jan 09, 2017
Democratic Socialists

Postby The Glitter Queen Aynia » Tue Sep 10, 2019 7:30 am

you do such a good job on this :3

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Escade
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Founded: Apr 11, 2013
Ex-Nation

Postby Escade » Sun Sep 22, 2019 11:36 am

The Glitter Queen Aynia wrote:you do such a good job on this :3


Thanks :)

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Escade
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Founded: Apr 11, 2013
Ex-Nation

Gameplay Magazine - Issue 10

Postby Escade » Tue Oct 15, 2019 8:31 pm



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Issue 10
October 15, 2019

In this tenth issue of the monthly magazine, we sit down with four NationStates personalities. First we interviewed Issues Editor and Game Moderator, Ransium, one of the fine members of the lovely region Forest. Then, we sat down with Hakketomat, a stalwart member of TITO Command of XKI region. Next, we hit up Salvarity, who has the best music taste in NS and is also one of the founders of The Empire of Mare Nostrum. Finally, we met the magnificent Darkesia, a multiple term delegate of The West Pacific.

This month there were planned pieces but due to RL busyness (and there was an article on mermaids and mermaid art planned ;,;), I'm only publishing a particular piece, "Origin Stories - NS and Real Life Skills and Success " which is about how NS can help shape real life skills and success. Next issue may face some delays due to stuff.

Contents
Forum | Dispatch (Index of Issues)

Featured Personality: Darkesia
Dispatch

Featured Personality: Hakketomat
Dispatch

Gameplay Magazine - Origin Stories - NS and Real Life Skills and Success
Dispatch

Featured Personality: Ransium
Dispatch

Featured Personality: Salvarity
Dispatch


Special thanks to all my interviews and editors <3

~
Last edited by Escade on Tue Oct 15, 2019 9:06 pm, edited 9 times in total.

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Escade
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Founded: Apr 11, 2013
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Postby Escade » Tue Oct 15, 2019 8:31 pm

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Forum | Discord | Dispatch

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Featured Personality: Darkesia
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Our guest today, is Darkesia, known for her chocolate promotion and as former multiple delegate of the The West Pacific.


How did you learn about NationStates? How long have you been playing NS?

I learned of NationStates from the Political Chatroom and Forum which I used to moderate. It was an MSN chatroom. Wrap your head around that for a bit. Ha! Someone mentioned the site as a place to mess around with creating a nation. I think 10 or 12 of us ventured over here. The last of them left the game years ago. My first nation was just a test nation made about 6 months before Darkesia. According to NS records, Darkesia was created Tue Mar 01, 2005 9:15 pm. That’s 14.5 years. I credit the patient, volunteer mods/admins and incredibly creative player base with the remarkable addictiveness of this game.


What is the significance or story behind your nation's name and flag?

In that chatroom I mentioned, I was “InTheDark” and wanted to use that name when I came here with those players. But alas, the name was taken. So, I kept the word Dark, which was already used as my nickname and just made it into a nation… Land of the Dark, Darkland (taken), Darkania (taken)… Darkesia! I say it: Dark-ess-ee-ah. My current flag is a creative gift from Yy4u. There is a bit of symbolism in it. Since my time in Gatesville I have carried the Crown and Swords of that region’s flag in memoriam and tribute. The stylized West Pacific Sun is also present. My previous flag, which I used for years carried both symbols as well, along with the image of a keeper of secrets.

Tell us about your early career in NationStates and the significant things you did to lead you to where you are today?

Significant events in my development as a player were not always significant events in NS.

I noticed early on that there were unwritten rules to the part of the game we now call GP. I spent some time wandering around NS just trying to figure out what was going on around me. In typical me fashion, it did not occur to me to physically move my nation around, I just poked around the forums that drove the game at the time. I didn’t even know there was an RMB, such that it was. Then one day, I joined the 10KI forum. They seemed to know what they were doing and were extremely well organized. What followed was an embarrassing array of n00b behavior that got me kicked out and banned from the region. They thought I was a spy.

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The goal of a spy is to, "...." How to be a good spy in NationStates:


WHAT?!!! You can be a SPY in this game??!!! What better way to learn all the unspoken rules than to become a player that moved in the unspoken world? Thus, was born my love of espionage and intrigue in the game. Thank you Grub for that unintentional consequence!

I finally became aware of the region I was in and was thrust into TNP and the Pixiedance Affair. It was a very exciting time for me and, I think for the game. When I needed a rest from the intrigue, I spent time in Lemuria. I treasure the memory of active times in that region. At the time, it was a region of mostly former and contemporary TNP heavyweights. I felt honored to hang with them and was never made to feel unwelcome despite my growing reputation as a regional security threat elsewhere.

Along the way, I met Dilber who taught me the technical aspects of spycraft. In those days it was the defender groups that were innovating. Because there was no influence to keep regions safe, Defender regions and inter-regional defender alliances were very strong and exercised political influence across the game. They used their skills to form large armies that enforced their will across the game and played it all off as the moral highground of regional defense.

Then came the destruction of The Invaders forum. I had been spending a lot of time with various raider groups as an infiltrator of their ranks. (aside: I remember TBH in it’s infancy, when everyone laughed at them and the hilarious tongue in cheek birth of LWU.) I had begun identifying with the raiders. They were in it for fun and were often on the receiving end of some harsh mod actions (remember, no influence yet). So, when RLA (which I had become a part of about a month previous) destroyed the forum of Invaders, I was heartbroken and turned my back completely on defender organizations.

RLA was the Red Liberty Alliance, a leftist focused defender inter regional alliance. I'm not inclined to give opinion on the incident. Who knew, cover ups, who actually did it, doesn't matter. It had a profound effect on how I saw the game and its players.

This freed me to be part of Gatesville and the PRP and later NPD and NPO. It is far more fun to be the bad guy than it ever was being the good guy. I met TAO, who taught me about leadership in NS and Ivan, who taught me about power in NS. Grub, Dilber, TAO, Thel D’Ran and Ivan are the players which had the most influence on my gameplay. There are a ton more who influenced my experience in the game and several who have become RL friends, but those had the most impact on how I played the game.

The West Pacific took me in at a time when no one would touch me. As a matter of fact, some hard-line defenders quit the TWP Senate and left the region when I was accepted into the Senate. Later, during and after the LoA thing, TWP was still accepting of me, enough to grant me the privilege of being their Delegate more than once. I owe the region my complete loyalty and they have it.

Somewhere in there was the Neutral Territory Conference. I may have been the GV delegate at the time? I used that old forum back from the beginning and remasked it. I am proud of the discussions that took place there and how long it lasted without getting mean spirited. I suspect that much of the animosity between TSP and TWP stems from that conference, though few remember it now.

What region are you currently a part of? What do you like best about this region?

See above. TWP is a region of honesty. We are honest about the mechanics of the game and how that effects power structures within regional governments. We are too honest to mess around much with legal speak in our regional government legislation. We are honest about who we are within the game and accept anyone into the fold who demonstrates the same honesty. That doesn’t mean we want you to believe the same things we do. And it doesn’t mean we will blindly go where we are lead. But it means we will accept you as the crackpot you are and share our chocolate with you. All of this is contingent on the use of proper sentence structure on the RMB, of course.

XD, well proper sentence structure rules me out :P I've associated you with chocolate in NS as long as I've been slightly more aware of what happened outside of my original region. What is your favorite type of chocolate?

IRL it's dark chocolate. Specifically, a locally made dark chocolate covering red grapes. IC, it's got to be Darkesian chocolate covered anything... on a stick.

What are your thoughts on the various gameplay venues (forums, Discord, gameside\RMB)?
I miss the use of forums. It has a permanence that isn’t felt in Discord. I have seen statements that most of the game is played in Discord now. But frankly I have not seen that. I see social gatherings in Discord. They are fun. But that’s not the game, or at least it isn’t the game I want to play. Because of time constraints, I’m not a traditional Roleplayer. Perhaps I would feel differently if I were such a player. I miss the intrigue and the power politics. I try not to whine about it because I truly do not know how to bring that back to the game.

There is definitely a change in gameplay, in some ways for the better and some ways for the worse. There are things that I wouldn't bring back, but I think there are things that are missed.

What has been your favorite historical moment in NS?
Being a tiny cog in the Puppet Master wheel. It was fascinating and exciting to watch hundreds of endorsements move in a coordinated attack.

What was the Puppet Master wheel incident or event?
Puppet Master II has been discussed a whole lot on the GP forum. It was a well coordinated attack on TNP to unseat whatever tyrant had the Delegate seat at the time. It used an idea similar to switchers at a time when it took 24 hours or more to get into the WA (UN). And "triggering" was done through TG, AIM and IRC. Ask Ballotonia about it.

If you were Max Barry for a day, what would you do?
Find a way to make sure that cover of Providence is animated and give Darkesia a discount on the advance hardcopy.

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Providence is the latest novel by Max Barry. The cover is quite striking.


What do you do for fun when you're not on Nation States?
I am an avid hiker and a certified naturalist. I volunteer for many park systems around me. I care more about nature than I do people.

A certified naturalist is an individual who has gone through some training or a "program [that] uses a science curriculum, hands-on learning, problem-solving, citizen science, and community service to instill a deep appreciation for the natural communities of the state and to inspire individuals to become stewards of their local resources." I think Greta Thunberg has perhaps taught me that caring about nature is in fact caring about people.

What is your favorite movie and\or TV and\or anime show(s)?
I don’t like anime. All the characters look the same, so I have a hard time following the plot. Also, there is a lot of sweating and shouting for no reason. It’s weird. I binge Netflix or Amazon Prime sometimes, but I only watch TV for College Football. Nothing else is worth the advertising for me.

Favorite book(s)?
New favorite book is Where the Crawdads Sing. Everyone should read it now.

Favorite music\songs?
I like a bit of everything and tend to listen to types of music depending on activity.

What is a game (outside of NS) that everyone should play?
Hopscotch with a 5-year-old. I’m not joking. Try it. You’ll see.

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How long has it been since you've done something silly and fun?


So you wake up one morning and receive the delegacy of any region you choose. Which would you choose? And what would you do as delegate?
The Pacific. Break the ties with outside games and retire the trappings and language of the NPO. It’s time to move on. Let’s face it. I have wanted TP since that Cow sullied the chair with its rump roast.

What is one change you would make to NationStates to help improve the game experience?
As mentioned above, I don’t know. If I have an idea, I will shout it to the [violet] sky. But alas, I am at a loss. How does one explain a universe where cutthroat competition can exist beside mutual respect to those who have never seen it? Are we too secure in our regions? Nothing to fight for or against in the game, so we consume one another… Is that even fixable?

I think at the core of it, the problem is that there is nothing to fight for or against easily and everyone is mired in the same muck of double standards and hypocrisy that there is no side to really root for. How could it be fixed? What mechanics could be introduced other than a hard reset? Would that even be enough? I don't know.


Thank you to Darkesia for the interview!

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Escade
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Founded: Apr 11, 2013
Ex-Nation

Postby Escade » Tue Oct 15, 2019 8:32 pm

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Forum | Discord | Dispatch

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Featured Personality: Hakketomat
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Our guest today, is one of NS's finest vampires, Hakketomat who is a former member of the XKI Council of 9 and is currently a member of TITO Command. XKI is a region that I have loved ever since playing games on the forums and hanging out with the eclectic mix of players on their Discord.

How did you learn about NationStates? How long have you been playing NS?

I learned about NationStates when I was bored and looking for some kind of game in which I could be in charge of a nation or something. Something political. After a Google-search, this game popped up on the list of results. I started playing in March 2015, thus I’ve been playing for about three and a half years.

What is the significance or story behind your nation's name and flag?

Oh dear… my name… It really doesn’t mean anything if I’m gonna be straight forward. I came up with it when I was thirteen or something and I was playing a different online text-based game. I just thought of something (in Norwegian) that was gonna be slang or a shortened version of “(I) don’t have (a) tomato”. In Norwegian, it means “(Jeg) har ikke (en) tomat”. The words “har” (have) and “ikke” (don’t) are often put together as “ha’kke”. Thus, it became “Hakketomat”. It was completely random to say the least. It has often been the case that when I’m creating a character in various games, I just come up with something and this would be one of those cases. My name has often been misinterpreted as “hacking/slashing tomatoes” and I don’t blame people for that. Now, my name has absolutely no meaning except that it is my name.

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The game Vampire: Masquerade - Bloodlines is popular among NSers and has an in-depth lore attached. My personal favorites are the Ventrue and the Toreador clans.


My flag is basically two symbols that I got from a role playing game. I played the videogame called Vampire: Masquerade - Bloodlines. In that world, there is a vampire organization called “Camarilla” which is represented by the symbol on the left side of my flag. It’s basically an organization that tries to govern vampires and creates laws of which the believe vampires should live by. Those laws are mostly in place to keep vampires secret and to protect vampires. Thus, you could probably say that I am doing vampires a great disfavor by putting that symbol on my flag… The symbol on the right side of my flag, represents one of the vampire clans called “Tremere”. Those vampire are a nice bunch who specialize in Blood Magic.


Tell us about your early career in NationStates and the significant things you did to lead you to where you are today?

In the beginning, I was trying to establish reasons for why I should continue playing the game. I was approaching the 10000 Islands forum carefully because the people seemed rather scary and the spam section didn’t make much sense to me. Today, those scary people are my closest friends in the game and I happily log on to chat/spam with them.

TITO seemed like an organization that I didn’t want to be a part of at first. I have experience with other browser games in which guilds require you to be online for about 24/7 and I had no interest in that. I thought TITO was another organization like that. But then,a few months after I had started playing, TITO needed people for a mission. I felt that maybe I could lend a hand. And so I joined TITO after all. It turned out to not be one of those guilds that I feared it would be.

One of the more significant things I’ve done while in TITO is looking up to Louisistan who sometime after I joined, was the Executive Officer and keeper of paperwork. It was because of my admiration of him and his position, that I got the position later on while I also was serving as Senator on the Council of 9; the government of 10000 Islands. This was back in July 2017 and that means that I’ve been in that position very long. Maybe far too long, as some voices inside my head are suggesting…

But that is all pretty much just inside 10000 Islands and TITO. It wasn’t until a year ago that my name was… uhm… sort of becoming known outside my region… Recently, I’ve taken an interest in other regions’ Discord servers, although a very limited interest. I am basically just playing WereWolf on TRR’s server. I’ve taken part in some of TRR’s PopMasters and RejectVisions… I’ve not done a whole lot of significant things. Instead, it’s been babysteps from my first days until today.

10000 Islands is one of those small UCR communities that has continued to keep it's unique blend of innocence and fun spirits intact. What other regions are you currently a part of? What do you like best about these regions?
I am a member of 10000 Islands, The Rejected Realms, and The South Pacific. I don’t think I need to talk too much about 10000 Islands since I’ve already mentioned some things. I do love the Spam section (Taco Island) of their forum. It’s pretty much where I live.
As for the other two regions… TRR is a great place to relax. They have fun events such as the PopMaster and RejectVision. TSP on the other hand… it has some dedicated people. Very interesting politics that is a big contrast to what I am used to from 10000 Islands.
Both of TRR and TSP, my activity is mainly limited to their Discord servers. Their forums don’t have an awesome spam section such as 10000 Islands’ Taco Island.


What are your thoughts on the various gameplay venues (forums, Discord, gameside\RMB)?
Forums need to learn from 10000 Islands’ spam section… Too many forums are limited to games such as “guess next person to post”, “last person to post wins”, “spam points”, or threads in which the next post has to be a word that starts with the letter that the last post’s word ended with… Taco Island has some of those threads as well, but only the “Last person to post” is the successful one. Other than that, it’s all pretty much random stories and scenarios that could resemble some form of Role-Play. Of course, I don’t know about role playing that takes place on different forums. I am not a role-player myself.

Discord is great for chatting and it enables more live activity and games. It is also a place where I have met more people from outside 10000 Islands. That’s great. It can get a tad bit messy with all the memes that I feel like I’m too old to understand or laugh at…
The RMB is where I pay the least amount of attention to. It’s pretty much the thing that makes me think “oh yeah… forgot about that… there are people using this thing…”.

What has been your favorite historical moment in NS?
Yikes… things happen outside 10000 Islands? Difficult question… I guess my favorite moment is when I joined :P

If you were Max Barry for a day, what would you do?
Write a book about Hakketomat (don’t need much more than one day for that…). I’d also make Hakketomat’s card Legendary. Another great idea would be to require all other players to write a telegram to Hakketoma in which they would express their admiration for him on a monthly basis. Giving Hakketomat a special inbox for this would be essential.

What do you do for fun when you're not on Nation States?
There is fun outside NationStates…? Well, I do play on my beloved PlayStation as well as watching Netflix on it.

What is your favorite movie and\or TV and\or anime show(s)?
Ai ai ai… My favorite movies would be Harry Potter although I like the books more (obviously). My favorite TV show is Mad Men. Great show taking place in the 60’s when doctors smoked while seeing their patients...


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Hakketomat has an old soul and Mad Men captures a bygone era...
]


Favorite book(s)?
That would be Harry Potter. Although the law books that I’ve been reading are great as well since they help me get some sleep if counting sheep proves futile.


Favorite music\songs?
Oh boy… I think a few people out there know this one… Pink Floyd! And Syd Barrett as well but he was a member of Pink Floyd in the beginning. As for the songs… oh dear… I do like listening to Atom Heart Mother Suite but it’s quite long. See Emily Play is one of my favorites along with Empty Spaces+Young Lust, Astronomy Domine, Saucerful of Secrets, Jugband Blues, and Time.

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Pink Floyd - is that guyliner we see <3


What is a game (outside of NS) that everyone should play?
Oh dear… I’m an Assassin’s Creed fan myself but I do think everyone should give Vampire: Masquerade - Bloodlines a go even though it needs patches in order to be playable.

So you wake up one morning and receive the delegacy of any region you choose. Which would you choose? And what would you do as delegate?
I would like to be delegate of The Pacific. The first thing I would do then would be to announce to everyone that I am a part of the Cabal. The I would leave the post and get back to 10000 Islands.

What is one change you would make to NationStates to help improve the game experience?
Well it’s a game that consists of a players with all kinds of backgrounds. That we all have different political views is one thing, but that there are predators here is something entirely different. A lot of players are young and/or vulnerable and moderation of the game needs to take into account the various off-site platforms. If it can be proven beyond reasonable doubt that a player is harassing someone on an off-site platform (especially a platform that is associated with a region/organization within the game itself), then that player should simply be banned. The attitude that activities on off-site platforms can’t be used as evidence is giving too much leeway to predators.


Thanks for the interview, Hakketomat!

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Escade
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Founded: Apr 11, 2013
Ex-Nation

Postby Escade » Tue Oct 15, 2019 8:34 pm

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Forum | Discord | Dispatch

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Gameplay Magazine - Origin Stories - NS and Real Life Skills and Success


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A year ago, I sold a short article to a popular online celebrity\entertainment website. I kept talking about a certain topic with friends and wondered why no one brought it up. So I wrote a short piece in Google docs (complete with images and GIFs, of course) and sent it to an email listed on a popular celebrity gossip\pop culture website. I actually didn't expect a reply back and was surprised when a few days later a very nice editor contacted me, explained that usually they received pitches first and then commissioned an article but they would take my piece with some edits. (Yes, they changed some of my images which hurt more than the prose edits).

It was a pretty surreal experience because of how quickly it happened and also because I got paid (the payment was per words which is the only situation in which I realized a picture is not worth a thousand words). For those wondering the payment was enough for a decent night out but most definitely not enough to make a living (unless I could write and publish like a ton of articles per day). It also took like two months from the publication date to get paid. So unless you're already famous, don't pin your hopes on a career in writing entertainment pieces to pay for fancy things in the beginning at least.

After the article was published, the editor let me know they would love for me to pitch more pieces. As someone who usually has a million ideas all the time, I kind of froze and could not think of anything else even though a large portion of my life is devoted to the world of celebrity\pop culture\fashion. I had two recurring thoughts: 1. I'm the most uncreative person to ever exist 2. I will never write another anything again.


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Most of the writing I had done by choice in my life at this point was either fan fiction or for NationStates. So I kind of went back to my roots. On NationStates, in the first region I called home at a time, I had pitched the idea of a magazine that covered more culture\lifestyle\arts type things (and actually gotten an issue produced) that was heavily criticized for not being "serious" journalism\etc. After there were a few less shi*ty, insecure NSers in my life and I thought why not do what I enjoyed doing?

I have always loved interviews and getting to know people from different backgrounds\experiences. So that's where the interviews in GP magazine come from (and I'll never have the time to interview all of the players I'd love to). Since I can "talk" a lot myself, I chose to follow a set of template questions (and branch off based on the player) and keep my own comments as small as possible. If I had something to suggest to a region, it would be that the reports on things like roleplay agricultural prices are great but don't forget the players. Players make the flavor of the thing. Highlight them, profile them, find ways to positively connect them. It also builds a type of connection between people and interests (something that, I, as a socialite really enjoy and find value in).

NS gave me a frame to write within which helped develop some of the confidence I needed to view myself as legitimate (even if everything still feels rough). All the internships and opportunities I was looking at wanted people with a set of clips\credits\portfolio and I had the one but nothing else for my portfolio. NSers and their interests inspired my arts and culture pieces and also helped me develop a portfolio that I could reference to (an article on tattoos, an article on D&D, an upcoming article on Art Noveau, etc). Somehow writing for NS kind of boosted me to write for real life. While there were ups and downs (one site did not pay at all which unless the place has a big name, try to find a paid market).

What I'd been doing (and which a lot of people do to themselves) is making things harder than they had to be and holding myself to impossible standards. When I was working in a less high-stakes environment (NS and fan fiction), I was able to produce without being paralyzed by fear and self-criticism. That's why I'm always grateful to my experiences in NationStates and other online communities (even with all the bad) because I felt like I sometimes learned more online than I ever learned in school.

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There was also some pressure for me to utilize my social media platforms towards more "professional" or "career-minded" purposes and I realized that my favorite social media spaces (Instagram, Pinterest, TikTok, Snapchat, Yolo etc) were casual and a freeing environment. Twitter felt like a constant source of anger and stress and futility (and after I hit a high point with a celeb retweeting something I said, I found it to be less interesting than other platforms). So the other thing is not everything has to be about some "serious" purpose. The things we do for fun, relaxation, silliness, are just as important for some sort of life balance.

So think of NationStates as a learning experience and a place to build your skills and learn from others. I've met roleplayers who've written hundreds of thousands of words - more than published writers, and have such elegant, striking prose that it brings tangible admiration. I've met artists, writers, singers, musicians but also people who in real life are working in a dead-end job but have so much more potential. You don't have to translate your passion into something in the real world but if you can - that's the best of both worlds.

In addition to writing and creative skills, there is also programming, management, organization, moderation - all of which can be added to your real world skill set\resume. Design something aesthetically striking (or that captures you in some way) in Google Slides and pitch yourself forward.

A final thought too is that when you're juggling between both, try to prioritize real life. There have been times where I spent more time researching\writing for NS and missed out a real life deadline. That's partially the reason I gave this NS project a time frame to begin and end. Even before it is complete (almost) it helped me get better with timeliness and working on writing pieces, focus and so many other things. I'm not sure where I'll be going career wise but at least I feel like this helped me immensely with what I like to do.

Be bold, go for things in real life and let NS be something that helped shape your skill set :)
Last edited by Escade on Tue Oct 15, 2019 9:59 pm, edited 5 times in total.

User avatar
Escade
Ambassador
 
Posts: 1019
Founded: Apr 11, 2013
Ex-Nation

Postby Escade » Tue Oct 15, 2019 8:35 pm

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Forum | Discord | Dispatch

~

Featured Personality: Salvarity
Image


Our guest today, is a player with excellent taste in music and who has experienced several different parts of gameplay. He is one of the founders of the UCR, The Empire of Mare Nostrum. They have a great Roman themed culture and some really great events and you should check them out!

What kind of region is Mare Nostrum as in what are the values, themes, goals? What kind of players are you looking for?

That is actually a rather complex question as of now. If you asked me a year ago, I would have had a much easier time answering it. I would've stated we're a serious GP region that takes pride in our politics, development, and have high ambitions for where we go on NS. But nowadays, we've really mellowed out as a community. Our main value is now our community, keeping the situation harmonious, and just making sure things run smoothly. We're no longer interested in up-ending NS, we're just playing the game to the best of our ability and in a way that our members will enjoy.

In terms of theme, we're themed after the late Roman Republic/early Roman Empire with other influences from the Byzantine and other Mediterranean groups. We are not too strict with that theme, since forcing a real life government onto a region just ends up with a dysfunctional region.

Goals are ever shifting, aside from creating a strong and prosperous community, which I assume literally every other region has, I'd say one of our more concrete goals is improving WA presence and endorsement counts all over the region.

How did you learn about NationStates? How long have you been playing NS?

I actually learned of NationStates through Wikipedia, I was googling free multiplayer online games and the Wikipedia article at the time listed NationStates. It listed other games like Cyber Nations, eRepublik, and other games, but NationStates was the one that I stuck with. This was back in June of 2011, so I’ve been on NS for over eight years now.

What is the significance or story behind your nation's name and flag?

The name, there really is no story behind it, but there’s a story after it. It genuinely is something that I made up on the spot, but over time it has come to be my identity. I guess I like it since it’s something I picked for myself, even if no real thought went into it. Just a tidbit, but in High School, I had “Salvarity” put on the back of my senior sweater, instead of my actual name.

I actually thought it was a real word - salvarity. A combination between salvation or salve and rarity. It should be :P

The flag was a request made to Hippostania, an RPer from the early 2010s era. I already had the colors of the banner, but the Coat of Arms was entirely his work. I’ve gotten comments that the flag is ugly and garish, but I still genuinely like it and consider it a part of my identity.

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Salvarity is recognized by his NS brand, a transparent S.


Tell us about your early career in NationStates and the significant things you did to lead you to where you are today?

It all started a long time ago in a galaxy far far away.

Well originally I was an RPer. I had my own group and even had an “RP Organization” that I was pretty proud of, it was called the Union of Equality and Freedom. It was a fun thread and a fun time. But I was also 12-13 and I was fuc*ing stupid. Like pants on head stupid. No idea how people even took me seriously enough to actually RP with me.

What kind of roleplay did you engage in then? Has that changed?

Originally, my main style of RPing as centered around nation building. Pretty much everything under National and International Roleplaying I attempted at the least. There were a lot of wars, of varying writing quality, some international agreements, trade agreements. I even remember trying to run a storefront for a while. That was pretty fun. The one thing I'm most proud of is probably the International Union of Equality and Freedom. viewtopic.php?t=149396

Nowadays, to be truthful I don't RP much. If RPs are started in the regions where I'm active, I'll make a passable attempt to encourage the development. But, RP has long since lost my interest as a player.

How did your interests in NationState progress?

Now everyone’s favorite friend, Unibot, he had a habit of reaching out to RPers in order to grow his organization, the United Defenders League. Naturally, being a dumb kid and all, I jumped at the opportunity and decided to help them out. On their very first op, I remembered they (the UDL) wanted more people to participate. So naturally I decided to be helpful and participate on two accounts. And that’s the story of how I got WA banned on my first ever op.

Somehow, I didn’t get kicked out of the UDL, I actually stuck around for a while. I distinctly remember never getting trained and having to figure stuff out as I go. Although let's be real, it’s NS and figuring out update isn’t incredibly difficult. I wasn’t bad at Defending and honestly I enjoyed my time there, I got promoted and won some awards/ribbons. But, eventually I got interested in the other side and, I can’t even remember the name of the person, but an officer in The Black Riders offered to take me along for a raid. I took him up on the offer and I raided for the first time. In my infinite wisdom, I used my Defending puppets from Kyzikos, so of course people realized. TITO complained to the UDL that I was raiding, I fessed up that it was me, and that was the end of my time in the UDL and Defending as a whole. I feel as if I should mention that I didn’t get forced out of the UDL, Unibot was willing to give me another chance (I think he realized that I was stupid and didn’t do this out of real malicious intent). I don’t remember my exact motivations, but I made the decision to leave at that point.

After those few months in the UDL, I was in the British Isles for half a decade, The Land of Kings and Emperors for like 2 years, and now The Empire of Mare Nostrum for just over a year. I’ve been in other regions during the years, but I personally track my NS history as UDL - BI - LKE - EMN.

I think it's so bizarre to think of all the players who started on NS (or internet communities in general) at a very young age. We only just, as a society, have even started talking about internet safety in a real way. The stupid things that so many kids did or the culture that we became acclimated to as "normal," really isn't.


What region are you currently a part of? What do you like best about this region?

My main region is The Empire of Mare Nostrum, I also hold citizen status in The North Pacific and The South Pacific. I consider Mare Nostrum my main because, well, it’s my region. I was one of the original five founders. The region very much feels as an extension of myself. I see my ideas expressed everywhere, in the government, the community, hell even the name itself was my idea. I feel genuine attachment to the region and I do not think I would be playing NationStates if it was not for Mare Nostrum.


What are your thoughts on the various gameplay venues (forums, Discord, gameside\RMB)?

I am still a fan of the forums, although that fact probably cements me as relatively old. They’re just so useful, with record keeping and the flexibility. There’s probably a bit of tradition and nostalgia influencing my opinions, but I still consider forums as NationStates at its best.

The RMB/Gameside is an integral part of NationStates, you need to use it in order to engage with those new to your communities, and I see no harm in helping the gameside community flourish. But, it’s a very limited medium and I’d rather not spend any more time than the bare minimum on it.

Discord is something I have used for a long time, even unrelated to NationStates. I still use it to keep in contact with real life friends and other gaming communities. Honestly, Discord is probably where I am most active on NationStates. However, at the end of the day, I consider it a net negative to NationStates and the experience of the game. It has effectively killed the traditional forum for most region by migrating the majority of activity to the Discord platform while not having anywhere near the same utility. I would credit Discord with killing NationStates as a game and creating NationStates as a social media.

That's an interesting take and one that others would share (that Discord has changed NS from a political intrigue game to a weird mixture of social media\mutant form)

What has been your favorite historical moment in NS?

The NationStates IPO in 2012. Max Barry himself says it was the most fun April Fools day ever, and honestly I agree.

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I missed this event, starting NS a bit afterwards but it looks pretty cool (also love that list of names that hearken back to an era).


If you were Max Barry for a day, what would you do?

Completely rework stamps, welcome telegrams, and how recruitment in general works on NationStates.

What do you do for fun when you're not on Nation States?

Well there’s a lot of things I do that are not for fun, but when it comes to fun I’d have to say video games are number one while hanging out with my friends is in second place.

What is your favorite movie and\or TV and\or anime show(s)?

I don’t think I have a favorite movie , but I did really enjoy Inglourious Basterds. In terms of shows, one that I really appreciated in the last year was Love Death and Robots on Netflix.

Favorite book(s)?

Picking a favorite book is difficult, but if I had to pick, the answer is World War Z.

I love your music taste! What is your favorite music\songs?

I consider myself a fan of Electronic music and a song I could listen to at any time would be Talk by Salvatore Ganacci.

In terms of channels, I'd definitely say to look at something like xKito or MrSuicideSheep. Those channels have a lot of music from different sub-genres in electronic and they label the genre of the track you're listening to. That way you can figure out what you're really into as a listener and can more easily look for what you want. In terms of artists I'd recommend people check out, I would say Xylo and CloZee, just because they're two of my favorites. Song recommendations are always the most difficult for me, but I'm gonna take a risk and recommend this obscure track by a relatively unknown British group. It's called Bohemian Rhapsody by Queen, maybe you've heard of it?

Serious answer is EMM - Freedom.

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Stardew Valley is a role-playing farming simulation game where you inherit your grandfather's farm in the valley, and are tasked with revitalizing it. The game has a pretty and relaxing aesthetic, a rich world experience, as well as multi-player modes.


What is a game (outside of NS) that everyone should play?

American Truck Simulator. This one is difficult. I want to recommend something that I felt had a profound effect on me, but most of those are reliant on circumstances, mood, or whatever other factors impacted my life. Thinking of a game that is a genuine experience regardless of all those factors is hard. But, Stardew Valley is one I think anyone could appreciate at any point. The simplicity, calmness, while being strikingly engaging and intensive makes it a great experience. I understand Harvest Moon has the same concept at heart, but that is before my time. So yeah, my game that everyone should play is Stardew Valley.

So you wake up one morning and receive the delegacy of any region you choose. Which would you choose? And what would you do as delegate?

The South Pacific, just to scare them with the evil imperialist independent coup, but I’d give it back within an update. I’m not interested in being government in GCRs and I don’t think there’s anything I personally could do with a GCR delegacy to improve the game.

Although the lul factor says take the Pacific and change the flag to a roast guinea pig.

What is one change you would make to NationStates to help improve the game experience?

Well, like I mentioned in the Max Barry question, I really think the recruitment system in this game needs to be fixed. I really do believe UCRs have suffered from a “tragedy of the commons situation” and that their stagnation is destroying the game as a whole. While I think a return to pure manual recruitment will frankly never occur, the base principle of that system, that active dedicated players bring in new members (through sending telegrams), very much needs to return. Shells of regions running on an inactive’s stamp money or APIs being run out of pure habit need to disappear.

I have never been deeply involved in building or founding a UCR but it seems the barriers to success seem higher. There was an era where more UCRs thrived and the mechanics have made that harder. Stagnation seems to generally have hit the game hard recently.

Thanks to Salvarity, for this interview and awesome music suggestions!

User avatar
Escade
Ambassador
 
Posts: 1019
Founded: Apr 11, 2013
Ex-Nation

Postby Escade » Tue Oct 15, 2019 8:35 pm

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Forum | Discord | Dispatch

~

Gameplay Magazine - Featured Personality: Ransium
Image


Our guest today is the gentle Ransium, an Issues Editor and Game Moderator in NationStates. Ransium is also the delegate of the lovely, unique region Forest.

How did you learn about NationStates? How long have you been playing NS?

Ransium is my first nation, so according the forum I've been playing since Oct 17 2006. I learned about NS because a friend of mine told me about it. He was 3,000 miles away and he had a very small region and it seemed like a good way to hang out with him.

What is the significance or story behind your nation's name and flag?

I wasn't really taking nation creation very seriously. I first tried some of my common user names, but finding them taken I got desperate. I was playing a silly web game at the time called "Mother Lode". One of it's ticks was to name all mineral with an 'ium' at the end (for example Goldium") I rifted off of this with the random start of 'Rans' and got Ransium.

As for my flag, my friend CTEd not too long after I join the game. Now alone I decided to jump ship from the region. I first went to the region of Wysteria, however I was intimidated by the well established culture of the region, and economy stats (which were prized in the region) were not what I wanted to max out with Ransium so I started looking for another region. Eventually I found a small region (<30 nations) called Forest which fit my stat desires and general interest and moved there. At the time, most nations in Forest where named after different Forest types. I decided to adopt the mangrove for my niche Forest type and made a custom flag to match.

Tell us about your early career in NationStates and the significant things you did to lead you to where you are today?

I was a shy nation but in the small community of Forest I was able to find a niche. I learned most of the players that lived there's personalities and got a long with everyone. At the time Forest was a founderless region with Errinundera as the delegate. I was present for at least one raid and wondered if we could put it to a stop somehow. Eventually Errinundera stepped down as delegate and after some discussion I was chosen to be the new delegate. Shortly after being given that responsibility, I decided Forest needed to be refounded so it could no longer be raided. We decided on Errinundera being the founder and started to take action. While it wasn't the worst refound you've ever seen it wasn't the sharpest either. Although Forest wasn't a huge then region, I'm sure if we tried the refound today we would have been snipped. Regardless, we got away with it, and with a founder Forest started to very slowly grow.

Forest is a very sweet and different region (I love how, for example, the theme is so well-incorporated into every aspect even the new forum). I've enjoyed the brief times I've visited or worked together on a festival. What is your role in Forest and what do you like best about the region?

To this day I remain the delegate of Forest. I can't say I'm nearly active as I used to be on the RMB, but it has a really unique culture. I think few would disagree that of the non UCR, non gameplay involved regions, Forest is one of the most unique. I mean, we were commended and all that.

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Both Ransium and Forest have received commendations.


If you were Max Barry for a day, what would you do?

Transfer all my funds to a certain tree themed moderators account! :p

What do you do for fun when you're not on Nation States?

I have a whole host of interests! For video games, I enjoy tactical/4X based games. I also have two dogs to play with. I enjoy doing something athletic and I am currently somewhat serious about power lifting. I also like cooking and gardening.

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Powerlifting involves three focuses.


What is your favorite movie and\or TV and\or anime show(s)?

Movies: Apocalypse Now, Office Space, Pulp Fiction

Shows: The Wire, The Good Place, Arrested Development

Going to sub podcasts for anime: How Did This Get Made, Reply All, My Brother, my brother and me

Favorite book(s)?

Neil Gibson, Arthur C. Clark, Neil Gammon are some of my favorite authors. The Barry guy is alright too.

Favorite music?

Classic rock (Beatles, Led Zeppelin, Simon and Garfunkel, the Rolling Stones); Fleet Foxes, The Devil Make Three, Old Crow Medicine Show, The Black Keys, The Alabama Shakes.

What is a game (outside of NS) that everyone should play?

Chess

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Ransium also enjoys chess.


So you wake up one morning and receive the delegacy of any region you choose. Which would you choose? And what would you do as delegate?

I think that already happened to me? But besides Forest I would say the TNP for the pure voting power! As delegate I would, of course, vote for all my resolutions at the first minute possible.

What is one change you would make to NationStates to help improve the game experience?

This is hard. Part of NS's charm is NS's funkiness. It's hard to improve NS without destroying what made it work. If NS could pay me full time (I'm sure they can't actually afford me) I would develop a really sophisticated stats model. Considering how simplistic the one we have now is, it comes up with some amazing complexity, but it's really flawed in a number of ways too. There's a bunch of web code changes to take from the early 2000's and bring it into 2018 (oh the forums). Having just a couple paid moderators would make for much more uniform interpretation of the rules (although internet moderation is inherently really hard to get right paid or unpaid moderators). But after I did these things would it still really be NS?

Thanks to Ransium for the interview!

User avatar
Bowzin
Envoy
 
Posts: 259
Founded: Aug 13, 2018
Ex-Nation

Postby Bowzin » Tue Oct 15, 2019 9:33 pm

Great choice! Its always fun getting to know more about GP people I haven't met before.
Bowzin Vytherov-Skollvaldr
| Statsminister of Balder |
Want to know my whole story? Check my Resume Dispatch

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Darkesia
Diplomat
 
Posts: 786
Founded: Mar 01, 2005
Left-Leaning College State

Postby Darkesia » Wed Oct 16, 2019 7:01 am

I'm honored to have been chosen for an interview, Escade. You do such a wonderful job with this publication.
I always learn a lot from these issues. This time I learned that I need to make a tree themed puppet and check out Forest. The RL naturalist in me thinks this might be a place of fellow tree huggers.
Blackbird wrote:Francoism is to fascism as Marxism is to peanut butter.
Greater Moldavi wrote:If I didn't say things like that then I wouldn't be...well me.
Katganistan wrote:I imagine it's the rabid crotch-seeking ninja attack weasels. Very hard to train, so you don't see them in use in many places.

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Salvarity
Senator
 
Posts: 4343
Founded: Jun 28, 2011
Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Salvarity » Wed Oct 16, 2019 7:35 am

Wonderful work as always, thank you for giving me the opportunity, and thank you for continually providing such amazing content.
Praetor of the Empire of Mare Nostrum
World Assembly Delegate of the Empire of Mare Nostrum

King of the British Isles
Prime Minister of the British Isles
Defense Minister of the British Isles
Home Minister of the British Isles
Culture Minister of the British Isles
MP of Parliament for Northern Ireland
Co-Founder of the SDLP in the British Isles
Admiral of the Royal British Isles Navy
Marquess of Winchester

Minister of the Exterior in the Land of Kings and Emperors
Minister of the Interior in the Land of Kings and Emperors
Senator in the Imperial Senate
Field Marshal Lieutenant of the Imperial Army of the Land of Kings and Emperors
Baron of Nassau

Lance Corporal in the North Pacific Army

Merryman in the United Defenders League

User avatar
Xoriet
Ambassador
 
Posts: 1795
Founded: Jun 08, 2012
Corrupt Dictatorship

Postby Xoriet » Wed Oct 16, 2019 8:22 am

Salvarity wrote:Wonderful work as always, thank you for giving me the opportunity, and thank you for continually providing such amazing content.

Keep your roasted guinea pig images away from us, you heathen. >:(
Legatus of the New Pacific Order

Let's show them that we can
Free our minds and find a way.
The world is in our hands.
This is not the end.

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All Wild Things
Envoy
 
Posts: 228
Founded: Apr 24, 2017
Civil Rights Lovefest

Postby All Wild Things » Wed Oct 16, 2019 11:10 am

Great interviewees! Nice work.

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Queen Yuno
Diplomat
 
Posts: 690
Founded: Dec 30, 2015
Psychotic Dictatorship

Postby Queen Yuno » Wed Oct 16, 2019 6:57 pm

Xoriet wrote:
Salvarity wrote:Wonderful work as always, thank you for giving me the opportunity, and thank you for continually providing such amazing content.

Keep your roasted guinea pig images away from us, you heathen. >:(

^^^^^^seconding this
You went from roasting birds to roasting guinea pigs =_=
You're the eternal enemy
(Though nice interview)


----

*sees all the other interviews* wow o.o
Especially the origin story
Someday it is the women who rule the world instead of men as civilization advances.
I do free grammar checks! Telegram me for Discord!

"Vote early, vote often." -Pallaith
Sierra Lyricalia wrote:
Galiantus III wrote:


...is there a reason the logo for the anti-NPO New Year's jumpers looks like the butt and legs of a kneeling naked lady? :unsure:


Imperium Anglorum wrote:Lol badge hunting accusations against people who already have the badge. You don't get your whole page covered in badges when you pass more resolutions, you know.


Vancouvia wrote:
Vancouvia wrote:

Alright my bad I guess I'll check back in December 21st


No way

User avatar
Escade
Ambassador
 
Posts: 1019
Founded: Apr 11, 2013
Ex-Nation

Postby Escade » Wed Oct 16, 2019 8:09 pm

Bowzin wrote:Great choice! Its always fun getting to know more about GP people I haven't met before.


Thanks :)

Darkesia wrote:I'm honored to have been chosen for an interview, Escade. You do such a wonderful job with this publication.
I always learn a lot from these issues. This time I learned that I need to make a tree themed puppet and check out Forest. The RL naturalist in me thinks this might be a place of fellow tree huggers.


The pleasure was mine, you're very cool! OMG their forums (Forest) are really intriguing and work like branches (thematically appropriate), slightly hard to follow for city girls like me but cool to look at!

Salvarity wrote:Wonderful work as always, thank you for giving me the opportunity, and thank you for continually providing such amazing content.


Thanks <3 *copies all your playlists*

All Wild Things wrote:Great interviewees! Nice work.


Thanks! I have been less active lately but will follow up with you soon about stuff we last talked about!


Queen Yuno wrote:
Xoriet wrote:Keep your roasted guinea pig images away from us, you heathen. >:(

^^^^^^seconding this
You went from roasting birds to roasting guinea pigs =_=
You're the eternal enemy
(Though nice interview)


----

*sees all the other interviews* wow o.o
Especially the origin story


<3 hai Yuns, I want to do your interview (or your origins story) :P

Also remember this from the good old olden days lol

Image

User avatar
Japanese Schoolgirls
Bureaucrat
 
Posts: 64
Founded: Aug 20, 2015
Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Japanese Schoolgirls » Mon Oct 21, 2019 12:22 am

It's great that people other than those who are in NationStates appreciate your journalism and writing skills. Pretty sure Elle would be renamed into Escade in the future.
유애나 | YOU & I

| Community is my name and community-building is my game |



H A L L Y U S A N C T U A R Y

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Hakketomat
Political Columnist
 
Posts: 3
Founded: Mar 06, 2015
Capitalist Paradise

Postby Hakketomat » Mon Oct 21, 2019 7:44 am

Thanks for the interview!

That's obviously not me in the picture ;) I don't show up in mirrors nor pictures/videos :P
Last edited by Hakketomat on Mon Oct 21, 2019 7:44 am, edited 1 time in total.

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