Friendz Und Da Bad Guys

An Excerpt from "Piratez Und De Scum-Suckinkt De Do" By Doctor Pieter Butthurtsky, Ph.D.

"Ya, de Piratez are a very very interestink culture in da many ways. Ya? Von of da most interestink, in mah own humblez opinion, is da questionz of Blue or da friendly status.

It is so very hard for us more culturaled types to comprehensky. The idea of honorz is warped and twisted yes, but in ze way that make total sense to ze Piratez demselves. Ya? On da one hand you can haz friends and on de udder, you can haz enemies und fight. At ze end, each parties can exclaim good fightz in de local and go on from der. It is a mind twister ya? But for dem, it is way of life."

Being a Pirate in New Eden is the hardest playstyle choice in the game and it isn't for the faint of heart. Being a criminal in the opinion of the rest of the Universe is tough and it forces you into a corner as a player, a corner with its own rules, its own conduct and its own expectations. Expectations that can change depending on the Pirates involved.

One of the aspects that have intrigued me the most since I moved from a Null based to a Low-Sec based life in Eve, has been the concepts surrounding Blues, Reds and Neutrals. In Null these conditions are set-up by the Corporation or Alliance you are a part of and are based on political conditions. Reds are Red and Blues are Blue, in most cases the two shall never cross, the amount of gray area in Null is very low.

Perhaps it is because I grew up in Providence that I've always seen things a bit differently. Since Provi was one of the few regions to "allow" neutrals to work, and we had clearly defined borders with -A- for example, the region was constantly a melting pot unlike other regions. The idea of interacting, almost on a daily basis, with Reds and Neuts was not a foreign one. I came to respect and in some cases even talk to our enemies. Even while on the "hunt" in some cases.

Low-Sec isn't all that different. For the Pirate, having official Blue standings is the antithesis of a good idea. For every Blue standing given you've eliminated a potential target. And with targets hard enough to come by, that isn't such a good idea. But that doesn't mean you can't have friends. Many, many times over the last year I've flown in gangs or fleets with people that were not officially Blue to me. Often I'll pick up a few guys in local to go roaming with, or some of us will get together on the spur of the moment to kill a Carrier or something.

In my opinion, it is the highest form of respect to a fellow fighter. The idea that we can fight each other and still get together to fight others, to take advantage of opportunities and still be "enemies" in name but not fact. 

When I was in Lucifer's Hammer and nothing was going on, I'd fly into Hevrice to see if I could get a fight with a Tusker. We shared some channels with the Tuskers and I often flew with them in gangs, but I knew if I wanted a good fight I could count on them. They were officially my enemy, but they were also my friends. I got many good fights, won some and lost some, and in the end I joined them when things fell apart.

At one point or another I've flown in gangs with just about everyone that flies in our general region of space. Heck, even some that have flown in from out of town. It is one of the things I like best about Low-Sec. The camaraderie of Pirates.

On the other hand, it is always good to have enemies. And in some cases those enemies have to be created from nothing. This was a tactic I used to great effect in Lucifer's Hammer and it works to unite and focus your Corporation. A Pirate without enemies is lonely. You can't be friends with everyone, but you can respect your enemies. And they, hopefully, will respect you. But that isn't required.

In the end, for Pirates, any Official Blue standings are doomed to eventually fail. One day, one side or the other, will exhaust the available targets in the region and start thinking dangerous thoughts. It always happens.