Treaty I: on the Postures of the Initiated Nations
It is well known that something that identifies the East Pacific regional message board is its role-playing game, and its de facto predominant map, Valsora. The creation and semi-institutionalization of Valsora was not an instant agreement by all RMB regulars, nor was it a divine work, although in the end it seemed that Valsora’s absolute dominance was a matter of fate. Before Valsora there were maps, and after this there were others, but no one took away the title of dominant role-playing map, no matter how innovative and flexible the others were. And because? We will never know for sure.
What we do know for sure is how newbies, new nations hungry for fame and with multiple ideas of government, get trapped in the attractive network of the map that has already been in the corridors of the RMB for 5 years. And the way they arrive is almost the same, or perhaps differs in some ways: the neophytes go to the RMB, write greeting, joking or interrupting some drama of the moment, and then they ask:
“What is Valsora?”
And some beloved disseminator of the wonders of Valsoran RP, whether it be a nation loved by all that, as if it were a gate, takes turns from time to time to welcome the new one, or a moderator of the RMB who is guarding the hallways when life dies, as sometimes happens with our friend Kavanos; They show exactly how the pamphlet was, that initial dispatch to Valsora.
I have to confess that I found out about the existence of Valsora on my own, when Plazland still being cartographer. Of course, I was a bull for the slaughter. I looked for a place far from the powers and from Nonscio, one of the continents of Valsora and full of countries, to settle on a remote and dull continent, like Solitas was.
I tried to react to a war rp that was on the RMB at the time, but I was ignored: as I know other newbies were in their days. I stayed away for a few days, until I decided to do a diplomatic rp with a nation, Ostaria (of our esteemed Osterreich und Ungarn), and there began my story in Valsora. And also, the formation of a posture.
In Valsora there is no single form of role-playing, due to the diversity of people and craziness. However, there is a predominant form: military or war rp. I must say that the knowledge of weapons, tactics and the art of war that some “veterans”, “actives” and “fledgies” possess surpasses my understanding. They are the “majority” in Valsora (which does not mean that it is in a perpetual state of war, but it does mean that they always encounter threats everywhere), and sometimes, to navigate the jungle of the leaders’ passions, knowing military affairs was a requirement. And war rps and purchases of military equipment were more common than food purchases, and some boasted of their bellicosity.
Bellicosity is present in Valsora, and taking the stance of “warlord” was convenient in the aspect that at any moment another nation would declare war on you, whether over land, oil, or calling its dictator “ugly.” The famous wars against fledgies, where nations faced off against the newcomers, and often won, making the new ones their protectorates, autonomous regions or something like that.
However, the Valsora I describe is the Valsora I arrived in July 2022 (or 2032, because Valsora is set 10 years in the future of our present), and it was a decadent Valsora from its glory days. The halls of the RMB were also less crowded than in previous years, as witnessed by the graphs of our friend Stellar Colonies. The giant superpowers were asleep, symptoms of something that put the stability of the map against the cords: the departure of Shavara, Sicilianzo and Plazland. The game had changed.
In the environment without powers or extensive military threats, the intensification of diplomatic or trade role-playing, of which I was and am the main supporter, bore fruit. More realistic importance was given to food needs, to opening factories in distant countries, and to showing off our construction of worlds from the pompous visits of our red-tied, white-collared men and women of state. It was a type of posture where you opened up to your partners, valued selling your soul and declared your neutrality in the face of conflicts. It was a difficult position to maintain on a warlike map, but one that I defended since I entered Valsora.
Treaties of friendship and cooperation became more common, while warmongering was seen to fall into rapid and absurd wars. Some will remember with me that time when a resounding military victory “wasn’t canon” overnight. More and more rookies were carried away by the pacifist and commercial wave that was reborn in Valsora.
Taking postures became increasingly common when alliances were born. The rookie could declare themselves neutral and pacifist, not to mess with anyone and trade, or declare their militarism and get into a fleeting war with a veteran or active player. The civil wars became longer, the lighter threats, and the most numerous purchases. The position of some rookies was to be a nation with more and more territories, in their ambition of the “natural expansion” tool, although they normally lost it in the first war they got.
This was Valsora: or you were belicist, or you were pacifist. These differences managed to break an alliance, the formation of others, increasingly short wars, threats that solved with the immediate withdrawal. With the end of avoid wars, I, a pacifist delivered, not one, but two territories of my nation, to the voracious nations they told me that they would mobilize their army. Some, in order to get something to do, were dedicated to their civil wars, which ended with not very clear endings.
Soon, there was a new Cartographic Council. They wanted to put order in the almost anarchic Valsora, putting new rules and a guide so that the rookies did not stain and did not enter war every so often. They put norms to expansion, weapons, technologies, magic … Ah, magic! In another chapter I will treat it. Anyway, there was finally some reasoning in the course of the RMB roles game. Even, a grace period was put so that the rookies were not declared war.
This did not avoid the colonial ambitions that began to emerge, and the bellicose outbursts of some nations. The continent in which I had settled, Solitas, was already the breeding ground for new conflicts, both rational and absurd. I make memory, for laughter of several, the war where fishermen were mercenaries and the biplanes fought in the sky. And so for all Valsora, the threats were more common than the wars, the militarists were looking for fair causes for the globe and the pacifists that their ambitions were not affected by loose ends, while organisms were erected to evangelize Valsora on the “international law”.
But as everything comes, everything goes. I write this in November 2023 (or 2033), and the Valsora of the postures, has been overshadowed. New powers have emerged, but there is hardly any agglutant and dramatic movement as I once witnessed in the halls of the RMB. The majority of rookies are related to the rest of the world the first days, they are integrated into the map and, they no longer reappear; this being, together with the retirement of several colleagues, the cause that the speeches of the postures of the newcomers be diluted in the waters of the Sea of Piscary, a great inner sea of the continent of Nonscio.
There are no longer wars, or diplomatic visits, or political threats exciting enough for anyone. Everyone now adopts another position: I will make my own lore, but I will do nothing with anyone. When they collapse, they will be known as the new lands of the “active” players. I can affirm, except some other exception, and if other RMB partners refute me, that there are no longer waves of people to say:
“What is Valsora?”