Another of my CSM Campaign promises came true today as CCP announced the return of the Alliance Tournament! You are most welcome, thank you, thank you.
Once more A Band Apart will be putting a team together with the goal of finally winning this thing. Or, at the very least, getting into the final weekend. So far our best finish was 11th, and I think we can do much better than that. So much of it comes down to luck and decisions made based on zero information, but honestly the practices, the prep, the flying with friends, all make any attempt well worth the time and energy it takes to field a solid team.
I'd also like to address a common complaint I see around the community about the AT only being for large Alliances. First of all, ABA is made up of about 400 pilots. We are not in any way considered a "large" Alliance and yet we field a competitive team every year for the AT. So no, you do not have to be a large Alliance to participate in the Alliance Tournament. Additionally, for all those complaining that the AT is not worthy of CCP's time and energy - let me say this - I personally know hundreds of players who have left the game simply because the AT was gone. This announcement is literally 40 minutes old as I write this and I've already had a half-dozen DMs on Discord from players wanting to get back into the game - just so they can fly in the tournament. It does matter.
It all matters. Big or small. The AT isn't going to fix the problems that Eve Online is experiencing, or save your play-style, of course not. But it is another piece on the road to helping make Eve Online vibrant again. The AT is an institution. And it should be a vital part of the fabric of Eve. I for one, am excited to see it return.
Another campaign promise delivered. Now to get the rest done.