This interview has been translated from Spanish to English. Other than translation, the answers have been unedited
BACKGROUND AND ALLIANCE
BLITZKRIEG: To start, please tell us a little about yourself and your alliance (How you came to 590 and your Ants background, how did you start SOH, and about the core members of the alliance):
SIRE: Hello. First of all, it is a pleasure for me to be part of these interviews. I really like that those who make the game work listen to the players about their stories, their expectations and their concerns.
My real name is Sebastián and I live in Argentina. I have always been a lover of strategy. I came to The Ants after leaving another game. I played Ikariam from 2014 to 2022 without interruption (although I had also played a bit before). But I got fed up and chose this game. I was always at 590. I was a complete newbie when I entered the VIP alliance and my leader was Russian. When the war between Russia and Ukraine started, he said that he would go on a trip and come back in a week. But he never came back.
At that time our alliance (which was the most powerful on the server under his rule) fell into a period where leaders took office and resigned. The crisis did not stop. I took over at a time when the vast majority of players had gone to the other two strongest alliances. As you can imagine, stability was a long way off for us. In fact, we came very close to being left out of the tree rotation. We became an alliance that kept the balance between the other two. Let’s say, a third position (although we had a formal alliance with one of them).
In order not to dwell on this too much, I will say that we merged a couple of times. We also participated in two wars. The second one was the hardest for me mentally, and it happened before the first island. I reached my limit and almost gave up my part in leadership. Fortunately, my companions did not let me fall. We won both periods of wars(with allies of course. LAN in the first war, the strongest alliance on the server. HOT and RSG in the second. We fought ROA first and then ExE). However, this latest war killed the server, regardless of who was to blame.
Well, I explain all this because it greatly influenced the formation of LxT (today SOH). We are a mix of LAN, VIP, TLO and HOT players. Even today we have former ExE, IMO, HLL, Los, L5D and TIB players in our ranks. We are a melting pot of nations and alliances. Many say that we are a Latino alliance. But actually there are French, Spanish, American, Italian, Canadian, Turkish, German, Austrian, Arab and Indian among us. And we are proud and happy that it is so, you know?
It’s strange sometimes to have to think about the main players in the alliance. I have always considered that we all do our bit to make SOH a worthy alliance to face (or, conversely, join). If I have to think about the hard core of what SOH is today (considering the people who will leave in the next crossserver, as well as the ones who will come), I would mention Dionisia, Leosaw, KingCanada, Dalay, Blitzkrieg, Lightning Catcher, Grizz, PSLearner, Daniel, Peter, ViudaNegra, Andi and Lucifer.
Dionisia is a player who is always very motivated when it comes to making SOH a better alliance. That is, she always tries to bring new ideas so that we are more organized without losing the fun. She is also our chief diplomat. She is one of the people who contribute the most in the leadership of the alliance. Our contact is almost permanent.
Leosaw is our blueprints and information man. He is a slightly more experienced player than all of us. He plays on a server a bit older than ours and has been on more islands than we have. Also, he is also participating in BL right now. Which is a plus for SOH. But he is not only a person with a lot of information, he is also a very intelligent and calm person!
KingCanada is a great player and his word carries a lot of weight with the players in our alliance. He has been to two islands with us and he played a very important role on the island we won. He’s definitely a strategist.
Well, I would like to talk a little about each player. I feel like everyone has a part in making SOH what SOH is. Even the players I haven’t named. But I also don’t want to be cruel to our readers. Sometimes I write too much. I guess it’s the writer’s malady. Yes, I also like to write.
BLITZKRIEG: Tell me about your past experiences on Lost Island (the good, the bad, and what was your favorite part of being on Lost Island):
SIRE: Oh, the islands have been a roller coaster. We lost the first, we won the second, we lost the third. But after each island we became stronger. Even our defeat on the third island was a victory for us. I’ll tell you why. I had a very bad experience on the first island. There were some very self-centered people in the alliance that ruined the good internal climate. And we also suffered a betrayal from our ally PAL at that time, you know? I have heard that they do the same on all the islands.
In the third it was very hard. We found ourselves involved in a series of alliance formation, alliance breaking, betrayals, conspiracies, among many other things. But we fought very hard until the end. And we earned the respect of many players and alliances. I want to highlight our two allies on that island: TIB and IMO. They fought alongside us, shedding every last drop of their blood despite the fact that the situation was unfair to the three of us.
Nowadays many IMO and TIB players are in SOH preparing for Barren Lands. We will fight together again. I also want to mention that the rest of TIB has also joined our server recently, and I think the future of our friendship is really bright. My favorite part on the island is fighting as a team with my comrades. It is fun. And you know that even if you fight, in the end you will recover most of the resources.
Oh my other favorite part is winning. But we all know that the normal thing is to lose. There are 7 other alliances that have chances to take the prize out of your hands (even if you are the strongest alliance on the island).
BLITZKRIEG: If you could improve or change anything on Lost Island, what would it be?
SIRE: If I could change something on the lost island…I think I would add the ability to make formal alliances and have those alliances share the prize. We all know that on the islands people make alliances. But many times those same allies end up gouging each other out and betraying each other for silly prizes. The island format creates a climate where you can almost never fully trust your ally. You know the tension is constant.
Another thing I would like to change is that there should be a lot of spaces in this new range (R0). Honestly, there are players who ruin your island and diplomacy for disobeying rules. And you can’t do anything to stop it. So an R0 with unlimited slots would fix the problem (even if your number of functional players was reduced).
BLITZKRIEG: I understand that SOH recently won their Lost Island event. Can you tell us how you were able to achieve this amazing accomplishment? What was the strategy that you used?
SIRE: Our second island. I love to remember her. I enjoyed it a lot. We were called Laugh Tale(LxT) back then. When we won, we were all very happy and felt on top of the world. To really win an island is an indescribable moment. Perhaps it is an emotion similar to when your country wins a soccer world cup (saving the distances). But this time you and your teammates are responsible for winning it. And you know that winning it is not easy. That is to say… It is an achievement of your alliance and everyone will carry it in their hearts forever.
Also, winning an island usually consolidates the group. Everything is good If I had to mention what made us win the island, I think I would say that we chose our allies well in the wonderland. But we also choose well when to fight. Fighting is fun. But you must have gasoline for the end. Or you will lose.
We also used a schedule for our towers planned by Leosaw which worked perfectly and kept order (since it divided the schedules into three slots, covering all of our towns). In the end, the 8 alliances randomly submitted the first capture of the tree, and it was obtained by JPN from server #595. He started destroying all the towers little by little (which was a logical move) after the “rotation” ended and they regained control of the tree.
The agreement had been that, at the end of the rotation, each alliance could act as they wished. One of the alliances locked into its own starting zone. The other 6 alliances decided to unite and take the tree from JPN. And we did it, playing as a team. After removing their towers from the tree, we attacked the JPN tree on the last day in the last hour of the island. All at once. LxT got it. But, except for our faithful ally YoY, the other alliances decided to attack our tree too. We had to defend him for 20 “long” minutes. They were the most intense minutes of our lives in The Ants. But we won.
I want to thank YoY and their leader Muscle Suguru again for being great allies on the island, and for helping us defend the tree when everyone wanted to take it from us.
BLITZKRIEG: I know that everyone is getting excited for the new Barren Land event. How you are preparing for this event, and what are your expectations for it?
SIRE: You are definitely right. We are all very excited for Barren Lands. There are too many expectations. I think BL comes to correct some of Lost Island’s shortcomings. But also, I think it will be something very new for all players.
Well, I think I already talked a little about this. Sorry to be repetitive. But we have recruited a large number of very active and very strong players for this new event. Many of them were (and some still are) from TIB and IMO.
We are also thinking of new strategies to organize ourselves. But it’s hard to prevent any failure until you finally experience the Barren Lands for the first time. Even having information in advance thanks to our players who participate in servers that are already participating in BL.
BLITZKRIEG: Barren Land will have three alliances working together as one faction. What do you think the potential advantages and disadvantages will be working with two other alliances?
SIRE: Clearly one of the advantages is that you know that your ally is not going to betray you. Also, it will be fun since the duels will be relatively fair. That is to say… There won’t be 2 vs 3, for example. Or 5 vs 3.
But it will also have its drawbacks. By itself, even in your own alliance there are “egos” and also very different opinions that sometimes even challenge your leadership. Imagine three alliances united in the same chat discussing which is the best way to go. Clearly it will be difficult to agree on some occasions. And that can be a big disadvantage.
Another drawback I find is the issue of peacetime. Heck, imagine if your other two allies vote for a time that doesn’t suit your alliance. Most of the time you’re online you couldn’t do anything.
BLITZKRIEG: Are there any other feedbacks or concerns you would like to add about either Lost Island or Barren Land?
SIRE: There is a situation that worries me a lot. I think sometimes it’s confusing to know when an event starts or when the island or wastelands are unlocked. It happened when we were waiting for the first island. And it happens now with Barren Lands. And I’m sure this is also being experienced by servers who haven’t had their first island yet. I think it would be a great thing if the game specified the exact date registration begins for that particular event. Alliances could prepare better for these fun events that the game offers us.
Special Note - Finally, if you allow me, I want to say hello to all my friends and colleagues from SOH. Each one of you is very important to me and to the alliance. I love the group we are forming. They are all great people. Thank you for everything you do every day for and for the alliance. I hope we continue to have as much fun as we have so far. I love you so much.
BLITZKRIEG: Thank you for taking the time to do this interview, Sire. I look forward to building this alliance and server with you. There are a lot of great people in SOH, and I feel privileged to call them all my new family. I would also like to give a special thanks to ViudaNegra for bringing me into this amazing alliance. I’m excited to see what we can do in the events and on our server.