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Sins of a Solar Spymaster #73: Painful Lessons - Branch Falls - Page 2

Posted Mon, Jan 23, 2012 by The Mittani

Lessons Learned
*The Dangers of Multiculturalism: White Noise won the DRF/NC war as a Russian-only PvP powerhouse. After settling in Branch and recruiting a number of English-speaking corps, the membership naturally divided along the language barrier and resentment festered. This paved the way for the Black Noise coup and the collapse of Branch’s defenses. Ethnic alliances are historically quite strong as nationalism plays a powerful role in maintaining morale in the face of adversity; White Noise is one of the few cases in EVE where an ethnic-identity alliance has gone multicultural - and it was a catastrophe. There are a number of alliances with different language groups - GSF itself has a French and Russian wing - but those alliances aren’t tied to nationality as an identity like White Noise, Ev0ke, Romanian Legion or Hell4s. The lesson? If your alliance is an ethnic enclave, keep it that way.

Sleeping at the Corp Wheel

*Absentee Micromanaging ex-FC Leaders: Leadership failure is one of the most common explanations for an alliance’s collapse. In White Noise’s case, not only had Psihozz gone absentee, he left in place a structure where almost no delegation to directors was allowed. He fit the profile of the classic Bobby Atlas autocrat, a fleet commander in a political role who did everything himself, burned out, and left everyone wondering what to do in his absence. The other fleet commanders in the HB7 encounter were prepared to take the fleet out to fight for their capital system, but had been trained to not take capitals out unless Psihozz explicitly authorized it - and he was asleep. There’s nothing new to learn here, as this kind of error cripples more alliances that I can count - make sure your leader delegates enough that your alliance can function without him.

*The Risk of RMT: While accusations of RMT are thrown around as a propaganda tool daily in nullsec, something was fishy enough about the White Noise finances that half of their membership was ready to provoke a civil war. Nothing guts the desire of a line member to fight for his alliance like the impression that his hard work is padding the wallet of his leaders; a modern alliance must do its best to account for its earnings to its members and demonstrate that alliance isk isn’t being embezzled. The impression of RMT helped inspire the Black Noise coup and ensured that the morale of the line pilot was rock-bottom. The lesson? Have a public accounting of your alliance finances that every member can access, and don’t RMT - you’ll get fussed out by your members eventually, and they’ll abandon you.

EVE Drama is Costly

*Share the Spoils: In contrast to the WN kleptocracy, the invading CFC operated under a strict spoils policy where turnout on strategic ops would be directly rewarded with a fair distribution of Technetium. Each alliance working to take Branch had a significant incentive to push hard, and had a past record of reliable spoils-division to look back on from previous coalition ops. This ensured that participation remained steady even during a grueling off-time zone structure grind.

Now What?
With Branch falling, hostilities are picking up between Raiden and the CFC, which is now poised on the border of Tenal. The CFC has made noises about invading Tenal, and Raiden has responded by attacking the newly-captured CFC Tech moons in Branch. Unlike the WN conflict, which resembled an execution more than a war, the fights over Branch moons are the first opportunity the western half of the galaxy has had with the newly-introduced Time Dilation feature. Early reports indicate a significant boost to the power of Logistics pilots as the slower speeds allow more accurate reactions; we should have more data about a hot war in the Crucible era within a week.

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