POP QUIZ: What is the most dangerous weapon at your disposal in the playing of Halo 3 on Xbox Live?
The Battle Rifle? The Sniper Rifle? The Spartan Laser? In the right hands, each of these impliments of war can certainly be deadly factors in the outcome of a match.
At Tied the Leader, we would submit that none of these are the ultimate power weapon. In our experience, Teamwork is that which wins battles. The Headset and the Friends List are mightier than the Sword, or the Rocket Launcher. The wingman off your shoulder is more reliable than the weapon in your hand.
When a squad of gamers agrees to cooperate as members of a unified team, something magical happens. Their respective skills are amplified to a higher degree. When the individual functions as something larger than themselves, they become more formidable than they could be on their own.
I am talking, of course, about Clans. Now, it is no mystery that Clans are often reviled by the general population of gamers that inhabit Xbox Live. There are some that suspect them to be bully cliques that thrive on shaming newcomers into a submissive posture. There are poor sports who bemoan the tactical advantage that they create for their members. In response, some gaming bodies eschew the very notion of the word “Clan”, due to the bad static assigned to the term.
The Clan System has long been a backbone of the Halo Nation. In the playing of Halo 2, our rosters and command structures were built right into the game. As the title that launched our mission goes the way of the Forerunner, it is up to us to sustain the momentum that was put into motion for us on the plains of a place called Coagulation.
Enter the Good Game Network. Throughout our campaign against randomly matched warring parties in Halo 3, we have banded together to keep our home fires burning. At the time of this posting, 16 venerable clans still share war stories and create action for one another in the games that we love to play. We are also assisting one another with recruitment. That is where you, the reader, comes into the picture. Long-time-reader, no-time-poster? Well screw that. Ante up and Get Some.
It has been said that the Halo Nation is in a state of recession. Those loyalists who still play Halo 3 week in and week out may detect a thinning in the ranks of willing SPARTANS at the ready on their Friends Lists. This is a failing of no one. It is simply the way of things. Attention spans shorten. New options lure XP-hungry gamers to devour fresh gamerscore every season. Virtual warriors migrate to new and unstained battlefields. The world moves on…
When a population of gamers shrinks, what you end up with is a group of people playing a game because they truly want to; not because it is the only option in the marketplace. The fat is burned off the body politic – the awesome boiled down in a crucible. We have weathered these long winters before at Tied the Leader. In the twilight months of Halo 2, we took on gamers from various other clans that had succumbed to their own intertia. We padded our rosters with ringers and new friends like the spoils from a war of attrition.
In the opinion of this gamerblogger, there is nothing more rewarding than being a member of a Clan. The finest moments of my imaginary career in the service of the United Nations Space Command deal not with personal glory or imaginary medals. They are memories of flawless performances on the part of a real team working together to execute a maneuver cultivated in their very real playbook. Over time, the Clan stops being the means to an end, and starts being the reason why you play.
If you are a “mature” gamer over the age of 21, you are invited to join this party. This is a time ripe for consolidation. Now is for getting organized to sustain the Oo-Rah. Perhaps you have always thought that joining a clan was for other people. Yet, here you are… reading a blog about a video game. That must have taken at least two of three curious jumps. If your interests took you this far, perhaps you can come a little further.
Consider the MidWorld Forum your placement agency in the middle of a pretended warzone. We are in the Nation building business every day, finding good homes for the solitary soldier in search of an army. In a time of stark opportunity, we are hiring… so long as you speak your lesson and say it true.
Staffers from over a dozen Good Game Network Affiliates are standing by, anxious to make your acquaintance. New clans waging their upstarts in our house need boots on the line for inspection. Some are casually recreational. Others are fiercely competitive. Some are brand new. Others were matching their players icons when you were asking “What’s this Halo thing that people always talk about?” There is a flavor on our menu to suit the tastes of anyone who plays a good game. You need only knock on the door.
As Bungie dropped the curtain between us and their next killer application, an unmistakable challenge was issued: “You can leave that Lone Wolf stuff behind.” The good news is that you don’t have to wait for the street-date of the next bout to take the first step in that direction. The following question can be answered now:
When we Fall into Reach, and all of the citizens who fled the Halo Nation to answer a different Call come back to roost, who will be covering your six?