Exploding StarFugitives From Fate
"Anchors Aweigh" For BOTE '04
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Saturday, August 21, 2004 11:51:58 AM

Following up on his BG3 success, EleqTrizi'T has announced his intention to run BOTE '04. Battle Of The Elite teams are structured differently from the bring-your-own-team and draft-style games that dominate the TW-universe. Each year, invitations are sent to well-known TWGS SysOps who are then responsible for selecting, in whatever manner they please, a team to represent their server in the game. Although the game rules stipulate that the winning team host the next match, since 2000, for a variety of reasons, BOTE has been run by MacAhan at Fament BBS [telnet link]. Last year, Blue Adept/TimboRulz's Star Endeavors perma won the day, but BA's TWGS ("The Game BBS") has since gone offline, leaving the TW-community in need of a host. EleqTrizi'T has thus volunteered his system, which ran quite well during BG3, for BOTE '04.

Cbs Going AFK
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Wednesday, August 11, 2004 5:44:08 PM

In just 3 days, I will be relocating to the University of Missouri- Rolla for the fall semester. While I will be adequately wired (with no long distance charges, courtesy of these people), it is probable that I will be too busy to contribute too much to the world of TW, and I won't be playing in any games for awhile. Despite this, love me or hate me, I have every intention of maintaining this website. Since I will be rather busy, feel free to drop me a line if you think I've missed something.

BG3: Corp 2 Surrenders
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Tuesday, August 3, 2004 9:36:38 PM

At 11 AM CDT today, Team Timborulz formally conceded Big Game 3.1 to Team Kemper3, finally bringing an end to this troubled tournament. Unlike the previous bang, there have been no major disputes or allegations of cheating in this round. Most surprisingly, this bang has gone "without a hitch."

Team Timborulz never recovered from the fatal blows dealt to it on Day 1. Team K3 had a one-day— or more— lead on cashing and planet development throughout the game and was able to maintain exclusive control over all L4+ planets, despite the large universe which should have prevented just that. Team K3 could not have done this without dedication, support of newbie red players, and (of all things) CIM data. In the first few days of the game, when Team Timbo's grid was spread very thinly and sufficient cash had accumulated, Jhereg was able to explore 100% of the universe using ether probes. This is something I would not have thought to do, but it has proved invaluable. Using "vanished ports" data, Team K3 was able to locate (and target for gridding) all enemy-held xxB ports— which are vital for SDT. Using this data (and some good analysis scripts), Team K3 was able to effectively deprive Timborulz's team of cash by taking away their SDT areas and, on occasion, setting up deep-space ambushes on vulnerable reds. CIM data also proved itself useful for locating enemy citadels. Without CIM ports data, this game could have potentially lasted much, much, longer.

I do not know why Team Timborulz had such a bad start. As they so painfully demonstrated to us on occasion, they had many top-notch players on their team and were able to effectively wield what resources they had. It is my best guess that, combined with an unusually-high number of no-shows and chance encounters with Team K3 during day 1 PPTing, there was some sort of breakdown or failure in communication and coordination. Team Timborulz also faced a breakdown of another kind as the game progressed. According to Sir Lancelot, aka Master Gridder, "Nobody would listen... and people wouldn't run their turns" (ICQ, 8:58 PM CDT). Continuous setbacks placed Team Timbo's morale at an extreme low, compounding on their existing disadvantages.

A big thanks to everyone who stuck with it, despite the flames, to play this round. Regardless of the outcome, everyone involved— most importantly, the newbies— certainly learned something from the experience.

There is one final item I have for your perusal. I have decided to continue the HHT Tradition of making our corp's strategy and planning materials available to the general public at the conclusion of the game. For BG3 I opted to use YaBB's perl-driven forums. Online forums have the advantage of being more editable than static HTML, more collaborative than email and more permanent than IMs, and they were especially useful for pre-game planning. The Team Xide forums from the first bang are here, and the Team K3 forums for this bang are here. I have enabled guest access to allow anyone to view the forums. If the link doesn't work, try again later: my machine has been having hardware problems and is crashing randomly. You're welcome. You're welcome. You're welcome.

OT: ICQ Virus Strikes Bank Account!
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Thursday, July 29, 2004 12:29:39 AM
Off Topic Notice: This article has no relation to TradeWars or Fugitives From Fate.

The purpose of the ICQ virus I warned you about on July 16th has become known. An anonymous source reported that an intruder had acquired his online banking password and attempted to steal $7,000 of his hard-earned cash. Subsequent scans via Housecall detected the "dancing santa" trojan on his computer. I think it is probable, since no other viruses were found on his machine, that the function of this virus is to intercept passwords to financial services.

Although 128-256 bit SSL prevents thieves from intercepting your password once it leaves your computer's network interface, encryption is a moot point if your computer has been compromised. Passwords (and other information) can be intercepted by keylogging software, which records which keys you press, or by program hacks which intercept the data after you have entered it into your web browser but before the system encrypts it.

Infection by mass-mailed (or mass-ICQed) trojans is easy to prevent. Viruses will masquerade as one of your friends (or, in the case of mail viruses, a friend-of-a-friend) to gain your trust. To prove that it is not really your friend, simply attempt to engage the sender in conversation before opening the file. If they do not respond in an intelligent manner or if they do not know what you're talking about, then it is more than likely that the file is a virus. This particular defense requires absolutely no technical expertise.

There are some of you who do not seem to care whether or not your system is secure. Be warned, you might take a hit in the wallet if you fail to take computer security seriously.

What TradeWars has Done for Me
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Thursday, July 22, 2004 11:43:17 PM

It is times like this, when yet another tournament has gone down in flames and people are quitting by the corp-load, that make a person wonder why they are devoting so many hours of their limited life-span to this game. I too have asked myself that question, and have come up with an interesting answer— which is certainly not representative of all T-Warriors, but interesting nonetheless.

I started playing TradeWars on a competitive basis about 5 years ago. In those 5 years, I have developed a total of two websites, with a third as-yet-unreleased, which have required me to expand my knowledge of web-based technologies such as HTML, CSS, and XML/RSS (our feed is here BTW). These are things I might not have done were it not for TradeWars' motivation. More recently, I have experimented with web languages such as Perl (regexps, anyone?), PHP and have learned SQL database programming on the side. These systems are used heavily in the professional world. While my current skills with these tools probably won't get me a job anywhere, I suspect I am at least "halfway there," and these gives me an advantage over other future prospective employees. Again, TradeWars— which will probably see the result of this work before too long— was my primary motivation for learning all of these languages. It seems that perhaps I'll be able to take some of my SDT earnings to the real bank after all.

You have probably all heard the saying: "If life gives you lemons, make lemonade." My own spin on the saying isn't quite as catchy: "If life limits your TW time, make a TW bot." Rather than simply admit defeat in the face of teams with 24x7 human coverage, I have worked from a disadvantage to remain competitive. Indeed, debugging those 16,035 lines of code, plus the helper it runs on (which isn't even mine), has required a nearly endless supply of patience and resolve. Looking back, I can remember the hundreds of pods and scores of defeats that it took to get me where I am today— and, arguably, I'm not all that good. TradeWars, as I am sure others can attest to, has demanded an insane level of persistence from myself. I can't help but wonder whether TW has molded me into the most stubborn person I know.

TW hasn't been entirely without its downsides, however. I cannot say that I have much of a life besides school and TW. But I have met 65 people, and know some of them quite well, because of my TradeWars contacts. I am never at a loss for someone to talk to, and I have met a higher percentage of people I think are worth knowing in the TW world than in meatspace.

Were you to ask me if it has all been worth it, my response would be: definitely.

BG3: The Troubled Tournament
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Saturday, July 17, 2004 6:00:25 PM

Big Game 3 has generated what is quite possibly the largest flamewar in TW history, rivaling even that of the miserable failure and subsequent fiasco that was USO4. I have attempted to dig through the flames and construct a simplified, non-verbose, version of events for those of you who do not wish to read the posts themselves. First, however, full disclosure: I am on Xide's BG3 team. For what it is worth, I give you, the reader, my word that, to the best of my knowledge which is based on IM conversations with Xide and the rest of my teammates, our team was unaware of Big12ozHOG's rule violations until the log evidence was presented. Big12ozHOG acted alone and without the support of the team. Xide, myself, and the rest of the Team Xide fully support the punitive actions taken against Big12ozHOG.

Follows is a timeline of events I have constructed based on TWGS.org messages. I have made best effort to ensure its correctness, and any omission is strictly a blunder on my part. Because I am endeavoring to be brief, I cannot possibly include every single argument and nuance. All times are in the CDT zone.

  1. 2004-07-12 3:25 AM: TimboRulz makes the first public accusation of SubSpace sniffing against Xide's team after Big12ozHOG was caught listening in on Timbo's SS channel.
  2. 2004-07-12 3:33 AM: Big12ozHOG rebukes TimboRulz's accusations, citing an inadvertent leak as how he came in possession of Timbo's SS. The game rules did not clarify the situation since they only ban SS sniffers and not actual listening. The SS sniffer ban was the only part of the 3-pronged "gentleman's agreement" that could not be enforced using standard TWGS logging.
  3. 2004-07-12 9:17 AM: After demands for more information, <<Doctor Who>> posts a message showing all players who posted SubSpace-like numbers on FedComm. According to the capture, FearMe posted "10069," which was later revealed as Timbo's original SS channel. Based on the latest information, this was probably Big12ozHOG trying to establish plausible deniability.
  4. 2004-07-12 1:43 PM: Nazwes Chaiwind admits that he may have tricked FearMe into disclosing his team's SS channel number. Later, it is shown that this is not the case.
  5. 2004-07-12 2:42 PM:At this point, there is some confusion as to how Big12ozHOG could have reacquired Timbo's SS channel. <<Doctor Who>> discloses that he made the error of giving the new subspace channel "in-band" on the old channel. While this was a silly mistake, the latest information suggests that Big12ozHOG would have acquired the new channel regardless.
  6. 2004-07-12 6:23 PM: A power outage takes the TWGS offline. EleqTrizi'T was promptly notified of the failure.
  7. 2004-07-12 8:00 PM: The TWGS reopens on schedule.
  8. 2004-07-13 8:59 PM: TimboRulz withdraws his team from the gentleman's agreement, citing Xide's "abuse" of his team's SS channel as his reason.
  9. 2004-07-14: The flamewar continues throughout the day, unabated, without any new information coming to light.
  10. 2004-07-15 9:36 PM: Res Judicata (of TimboRulz's team) posts a message which accuses the other two teams of listening (yet again) to their corp's SubSpace channel. One hour later, TimboRulz echoes Res' complaint, but neither of them provide much in the way of details.
  11. 2004-07-15 10:21 PM: Intrepid hints at deaths inflicted on TimboRulz's team.
  12. 2004-07-15 11:05 PM: WooF and Angus, both members of Team TimboRulz, post their resignation msesages within minutes of each other. TimboRulz gives notice of Traitor's resignation.
  13. 2004-07-15 11:25 PM: Kemper3 reports that he had received and used information accidentally leaked from Timbo's team. However, he denies knowing how his team acquired Timbo's SS channel.
  14. 2004-07-16 12:55 AM: Stating his disgruntlement with the various accusations that were levelled against him, LokI resigned from the game (Xide's team) and took his entire perma with him.
  15. 2004-07-16: Despite multiple accusations back and forth, the source of the leak was not discovered today.
  16. 2004-07-16 5:29 AM: Xide extends an official apology to Timbo's team for his team's use of leaked data.
  17. 2004-07-16 6:04 AM: Big12ozHOG tells his side of the story in a message where he comes to the defense of LokI and the rest of Team Xide. He confirms that TimboRulz's team had an information leak "from [an] undisclosed source" and takes the opportunity to formally resign. Based on the latest information, Big12ozHOG's source was actually the unwitting FearMe, who used a standard password that Hog knew.
  18. 2004-07-16 10:29 AM: Per the request of Space Ghost, who is also a player on TimbRulz's team, the game is shut down. Space Ghost abstains from commenting publicly on the shutdown at this time because he is busy at work.
  19. 2004-07-16 1:29 PM: EleqTrizi'T decides to override Space Ghost's decision and assume administrative control of the game.
  20. 2004-07-16 2:01 PM: As a result of all of the quitting, EleqTrizi'T decides to take a poll of all players who wish to continue. He sets a deadline of 3 PM CDT.
  21. 2004-07-16 3:00 PM: Reportedly, EleqTrizi'T was able to talk to only 4 people at his 3 PM deadline.
  22. 2004-07-16 3:10 PM: EleqTrizi'T declares that the game is over due to lack of interest.
  23. 2004-07-16 4:11 PM: Reversing his earlier decision, EleqTrizi'T decides to push back the deadline for the game continuation vote to 8 PM CDT on the grounds that he might not have heard from everyone.
  24. 2004-07-16 8:09 PM: The TWGS does not come online as scheduled. EleqTrizi'T reports a power supply and hard drive failure.
  25. 2004-07-16: The Captains each report their status. At 8:16 PM, Xide stated his willingness to continue with the game and suggests on behalf of his team that the remaining Team TimboRulz and Team Xide players could merge. At 10:08 PM, TimboRulz also cites pressure from his team to continue playing. Cherokee, on the other hand, reports that he has no desire to continue.
  26. 2004-07-17 12:00 AM: EleqTrizi'T is able to restore The StarDock server to full operating capacity— by turning the hard drive on its side. Some time later, however, he reported that the game files for Big Game 3 had been lost, permanently bringing an end to the game. Discussion of a possible rebang begins in earnest.
  27. 2004-07-17 12:18 AM: Space Ghost bans Big12ozHOG from the tournament. He also reports that Cherokee's team will either be taken over by a new leader (probably Kemper3) or split and divided up between the other two teams.
  28. 2004-07-17 11:51 PM: Space Ghost suggests that the game be rebanged.
  29. 2004-07-17 8:50 PM: Space Ghost justifies his ban of Big12ozHOG on the grounds that he logged in to FearME's account in violation of The StarDock's rules. He presents log evidence to prove it. In an ICQ message to me, EleqTrizi'T independently verified SG's claims. It seems probable that this was the source of TimboRulz's information leak.
  30. 2004-07-17 11:15 PM: Xide changes his mind and declares, for personal reasons, that he will not participate in the game in the event of a rebang.
  31. 2004-07-18 10:44 PM: In an ICQ message to me, Space Ghost confirmed that, by popular demand, a rebang will occur. He states that the current plan is to assimilate all Team Xide members and anyone else who wishes to participate into Kemper3 and Blue Adept's existing teams.
  32. 2004-07-19 2:41 PM: The rebang date is set for 8 PM CDT this Friday, July 23rd. Team Xide has been split amongst Team Kemper3 (formerly Team CK) and Team TimboRulz. For a full team listing, follow those links.

It is my opinion that the most insightful post of the entire flamewar came from someone who didn't participate heavily. Kavanagh called the flamewar "a prime example of the futility of unpoliceable rules," and I am inclined to agree (26633). Hundreds and hundreds of messages were generated debating something that could not be proved or disproved: the use of a SubSpace scanner. If SysOps and team leaders restricted themselves only to enforceable rules, the scale of these debates might be vastly reduced because it would be possible to know in fact whether the accused party is guilty as charged.

Finally, this is my policy on revisions to the above timeline: If you feel I have misrepresented you or your team, please get in touch with me via the contact form on this website (and be polite about it). I will not respond to any posts to TWGS.org or any other public forum concerning this timeline. It may be a few days— or never— before I make the changes you request.


  1. Saturday, July 17, 2004 10:01:23 PM
    • Added item "2004-07-17 8:50 PM"
  2. Sunday, July 18, 2004 10:35:02 PM
    • Revised items "2004-07-17 12:00 AM" and "2004-07-17 11:51 PM" to account for the loss of the game files.
    • Revised the introduction paragraph in light of the discovery of Big12ozHOG's illegal actions.
  3. Monday, July 19, 2004 12:07:02 AM
    • Revised items "2004-07-12 9:17 AM", "2004-07-12 1:43 PM", "2004-07-12 2:42 PM", "2004-07-16", and "2004-07-16 6:04 AM" in light of the discovery of Big12ozHOG's illegal actions. These items were modified to help prevent misinformation.
    • Added item "2004-07-17 11:15 PM"
  4. Monday, July 19, 2004 8:14:32 AM
    • Added item "2004-07-19 2:41 PM"
  5. Tuesday, July 21, 2004 3:46:19 PM
    • Revised item "2004-07-16 10:29 AM" based on new info from SG

OT: T-Warriors Hit With ICQ Virus
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Friday, July 16, 2004 2:54:44 AM
Off Topic Notice: This article has no relation to TradeWars or Fugitives From Fate.

An ICQ virus has been spreading like wildfire among the ranks of TradeWars players. A total of 6 virus messages from different senders have become known to me since I first saw the virus on Wednesday at 6:41 PM. The virus is attempting to spread by sending the following message:

funny Santa :) (use arrows to move)


The emoticon/smiley used in the message is apparently random.

When I first received the message, I immediately suspected a virus was at work and conducted a careful investigation which suggested that the file was indeed a virus. My initial suspicions were confirmed when the person I received the message from denied sending it. Today, 5 new virus messages from different users were reported. Worse, I am not certain if the virus messages actually originate from the user that ICQ says the message is from— there is some doubt as to the integrity of the ICQ protocol.

Symptoms of the infection may include being disconnected from the ICQ server "because another client has logged on with this ICQ number" (or something to that effect) or strange Rate Limit Exceeded messages.

At this time, no information is available on what this virus does or how to remove it. For your information, the most common uses of viruses include DDoS attacks, web and email anonymizers, and serving copyrighted files (Warez). If you believe you are infected, you can prevent the virus from spreading or using your internet connection with an application-layer firewall like ZoneAlarm.

Calm Before the Storm
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Friday, July 9, 2004 12:02:19 AM

The past few weeks have, overall, been mostly quiet in the world of TradeWars as competitors gear up for Big Game 3, which is scheduled to begin less than 21 hours from now. EleqTrizi'T will be hosting the match on The Stardock [telnet link]. The bloodbath starts tomorrow at 7/9/2004 9:00:00 PM CDT.

Fugitives Win Latest Corp Game
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Wednesday, June 16, 2004 10:46:00 PM

Over the past several days, heh [2], our principal enemy in our latest corporate game, has come to a slow but steady demise. Last Sunday, an extern mistake on their part (planet overload) led to the death of 2 of their members and the capture of 5 of their planets and 50M credits in cash. Later that same day, in the evening, strategic gridding revealed the location of C2's primary base, which was promptly invaded (offline). Three planets were captured without incident. As of extern on Monday, C2 was able to (through the use of a player who was still alive) re-enter the game and announce their intention to continue.

However, it appears that C2 changed their collective minds about the game later on in the day. Shortly before extern on Tuesday, feral was killed in a Scout over Terra. Soon thereafter, Promethius was killed in a Scout after being immobilized with a pwarp photon attack. Less than 15 minutes later, strategic gridding, based on their known base location preferences, had located their last remaining sector. It was invaded around Tuesday's extern and captured, along with 17M of cash, without incident. Early Tuesday morning, feral returned with a concession notice and announced the existence of a single remaining C2 warpable (which was later captured). A log of the past several days is available here.

To their credit, Corp 2 was badly outmatched against a better-organized opponent. They had personnel reliability problems and were facing superior scripting technology (namely, photon prediction). This was by no means a fair fight between combatants of equal skill. Corp 2 has fought to the best of their abilities, and they should be recognized for that.

Our original challenger, Slim Shady and his team, did not put forth a serious effort to win this game.

Participating Players
Corp 1 - 1st
Fugitives From Fate
Corp 2 - 2nd
Corp 3 - 3rd
Estimated Prophet
Father Cajone
River Rat
Steel Magnolia
Iron Ranger
Jack Straw

SG Calls For Redraft, Adds A Captain
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Tuesday, June 15, 2004 11:09:43 PM

Bowing to the wishes of the pro-Res faction, Space Ghost has announced that he intends to redraft BG3 with three teams instead of two. Blue Adept (Timborulz) will be Captain of the third team and will be required to include Res Judicata on his team.

As a result of these changes, any planning and contacting of personnel each captain has done thus far is now null and void. In addition, each team will now have fewer experienced players available to help manage newbies since the same set of experienced players must be distributed across 3 teams instead of 2. As Xide mentions, the game start may also be delayed while new web software is developed and the team redraft and exchange process completes.

Update: Wednesday, June 16, 2004 8:39:22 PM

Space Ghost has informed me that the decision to redraft the game was also the result of Blue Adept's desire to be a Captain and the registration problems that have been plaguing Jerry's web portal. Considering the enemity between Res's friends and enemies, it is likely that, regardless of what was decided, there will be a mass exodus of players unhappy with the new situation. SG has attempted to placate as many people as possible with his decision.

BG3 Picks Announced
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Friday, June 11, 2004 11:20:55 PM

Xide announced the results of the draft for Big Game 3 in these two messages. At this time, the BG3 website has not been updated. Several Fugitives members are playing in this round, including:

Presently, the game is scheduled to begin some time on July 2nd.

Update: Monday, June 14, 2004 12:46:32 PM

Speedy is on Team X, not Team CK. My fault.

DU Starts Farm Team, Adds Members
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Friday, June 11, 2004 1:19:58 AM

Unexpectedly, Bone Collector has announced the creation of a new sub-corp, which is currently being dubbed "Damage Unlimited II," for the purposes of training, support of the original DU team and (much to the delight of DU's veteran hunters) farming work. They have also added Timborulz (Blue Adept), of Star Endeavors [broken link!] fame, as the CEO of all turn-based games. Already there are rumblings of a match between the new-and-improved DU against <<Doctor Who>>'s top-voted team, the Space Tyrants. I am not quite sure what to make of this new team, but with these top players working together they may prove themselves to be an even more formidable foe than ever before.

Fugitives Begins New Corporate Game
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Monday, May 31, 2004 2:29:28 PM

Yesterday, our team started its first corporate game since the disastrous USO4 on the Damage Unlimited server. The games page has been updated with this information. The same team that you see listed on that page took victory against a team of Slim Shady, spyhunter, et. al in the game's previous iteration. The losers have challenged us to a rematch, and we have accepted the challenge. Can our team repeat its success? Stay tuned for the outcome.

RIP T-Warrior Nautica
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Sunday, May 30, 2004 11:27:48 PM

This evening, River Rat received an ICQ from Nautica's account notifying him that Nautica, aka James T. Kirk and known in r/l as Brandon Swensen, had died in a car accident, along with the other occupant of his vehicle, on March 16, 2004. Substantial checking has produced this article in the St. Petersburg Times (Tampa Bay) which confirms his death. Brandon is survived by a wife and two children. The article also mentions that Brandon had significant legal problems prior to his death, including two counts of domestic battery. From another article in the Times,

He married Jessica Marie Carpenter, 21, in June 2002 in Pasco County, according to a Florida marriage license.

"We ended up liking each other, and every day it got better and better," Carpenter said in a telephone interview. She said they met in Land O'lakes and shared two children, a 1-year-old son and a 3- month-old daughter who look exactly like him.

"He was one of the sweetest people I've ever been with," Carpenter said. "He's not a criminal."

(St. Petersburg Times, 3/18/04).

Not much TradeWars related information is available. He has a user account at EISOnline and The StarDock, but has never posted anything to either forum. He has made posts to Yahoo E-Groups and Ship Destroyed. I do not know him personally, but I can say that he will be missed.

EleqTrizi'T To SysOp Big Game
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Tuesday, May 25, 2004 3:36:09 PM

For some time now, Space Ghost has been attempting to set up another Big Game-style tournament after the success of his HHT 2003 tournament. With the usual host of Big Games out of the picture, another SysOp has stepped forward.

EleqTrizi'T has announced his intention to run a Big Game draft-style tournament on his server starting around July 2nd. The new StarDock [telnet] is a 3 GHz workstation with 1 GB of RAM, so it is almost certainly up to the task. Captains have not yet been selected, but if this thread is any indication, SG might have trouble finding them.

Update: Tuesday, May 25, 2004 10:40 PM

Apparently, SG has not had any trouble finding captains. As he announced in an ICQ message, Big Game 3 will be a standoff between Xide and Cherokee. A sign up page is now available here.

v3.12.0 Up For Download
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Sunday, May 23, 2004 4:36:43 PM

I announced previously, based on information from EIS, that TradeWars v3.12.0 was in "closed beta" and not publicly downloadable. This is not the case however— EIS is merely having trouble updating the TWGS Beta page and have posted the file on the EIS forums instead.

SysOps who wish to download the file can do so here (direct link).

TLTT Becomes First Periodic Server
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Sunday, May 16, 2004 12:35:34 AM

For years, to stay competitive meant maintaining 24x7x365 uptime or braving a time-limited game, where one night of bad luck can instantly bring your winning team to its knees. The Lost Trader's Tavern has become the first server to limit not only how long you can play but when you can play as well. The server will now only be open from 10:00 PM to 11:00 PM ET. This will allow teams who do not have a bot-so-sophisticated-it-could-almost-pass-the-Turing-test to compete on a level playing field with those who do. The outcome of these games will be decided less and less by connection failures, script inadequacy and offline invasions, and more and more by tactics and planning.

Cherokee has been considering this interesting experiment for some time, and I am pleased someone has finally implemented it. Unfortunately, for those whose schedules restrict them to a different time interval, such as night-shift workers or those living in other longitudes, this server is no longer a good place to play.

v3.12 Now In Beta
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Friday, May 14, 2004 10:30:46 PM

EIS has officially released a beta of TWGS v3.12.0 for testing by selected sysops. The changes are mostly minor in nature, and most of the fixes are geared towards "concurrency" issues that can result from two (or more) players attempting to use a single resource simultaneously (i.e. ship transports). This is a good thing to fix since, in theory, a plethora of strange things can occur if all of the connection threads are not properly synchronized.

EIS writes, "v3.12 is considered the final release of v3 and feature sets are now complete" (News, 5/14/04). Barring any serious bugs, the development of v3, which has been over four years in the making, will come to an end in the near future. For better or worse, JP will move on to v4. Whether or not v3 will survive depends on how many bugs remain in it and what sort of changes are planned for v4. For those of you who plan on migrating to v4 games, you are in for interesting times. Your knowledge of the new game will be minimal, helpers nonexistent but rapidly under construction, and the result will be the biggest "arms race" in the game of TradeWars.

ElderProphet Launches Autohaggle Project
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Friday, May 7, 2004 4:11:08 PM

ElderProphet has started a blog detailing a new haggle script he is working on that will allow you to "not miss out on a single credit" (ElderProphet, 5/6/04).

According to the page, the script works by first determining the port's MCIC value, a property available via TEDIT but hidden from (direct) view. ElderProphet is not the first person to use MCIC values in haggle calculations— Cherokee was one of the first to release his research publicly. However, as stated, his researched formulas only apply to planet haggles.

Presently, ElderProphet is working on optimizing the time it takes to determine the port's MCIC value. Once that is complete, a TWX script will be released. If released, it will become the next must-have script for maximum moneymaking.

Dupes At Trader's Tavern, Pseudo-Dupes Elsewhere
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Friday, April 23, 2004 2:46:33 PM

Tomorrow at noon EDT, Cherokee will be running the TWChess v2 edits on his server. He has chosen to allow up to 4 duplicate accounts (dupes) per real person, on teams of 4, with mega corping NOT allowed (edit: see below). For those interested, there is still plenty of space left to sign up. Be warned, according to the Who's Playing page there is a team consisting entirely of prestone dupes and a team consisting entirely of <<Doctor Who>> dupes.

Some players may be scared away by the prospects of fighting an entire team consisting solely of the TradeWars über-elite, who have plenty of time on their hands and often have round-the-clock human coverage of the game. However, it is important to recognize that such teams exist in games that forbid duping. Some time ago, I posted an article about unenforceable rules in which I demonstrated that the traditional No Account Sharing restriction can be beaten through the use of proxy programs. Recently, I have seen this trend emerge among the ranks of T-Warriors. Experienced players with time on their hands have begun to run their teammates' turns as well as their own; the SysOp none-the-wiser. This begs the question: What is the cause of this pseudo-duping?

This is not just a matter of the experienced controlling the inexperienced. In all cases I have seen, the accounts being pseudo-duped were owned by people perfectly capable of playing without such intervention. In my discussions with other players, I have found a single common complaint surrounding TradeWars: It takes a lot of time to run your turns. TW requires so much time that a common reason for not playing (which I have had to use myself) is the lack of free time. Pseudo-duping allows those with little time to participate without negatively impacting the team due to their lack of time. Thus, it is quite possible (but not certain) that this is the primary cause of the pseudo-duping problem.

Exactly how much time does it take to play TradeWars? Consider a game I played in recently that had 1500 turns/day and a 1 turn/warp Scout Marauder. As with any game, a grid is of vital importance. For maximum efficiency and safety, it was necessary to use a 2-man planet gridder. The process is slow, however, and you can't expect to move any faster than (on average) 15 seconds/sector. With the above givens and assuming that a holo-scan is conducted every move, the total time required to grid all turns is about 3.1 hours. That is 3.1 hours of baby-sitting a process that requires constant attention but minimal interaction— akin to watching paint dry. Very few people have the time and patience to carry out such a task. Our team, which lost due to lack of time, certainly didn't.

In order to make TradeWars accessible to a greater number of people, some changes to the way the game works are in order. One player suggested that turns could regenerate on a weekly basis instead of a daily basis, giving players greater flexibility to run their turns at the time that is most convenient for them. An interim solution, which does not require changes to the game architecture, is to simply lower the number of turns allocated per day. This would have the secondary effect of making games last longer, which may or may not be a good thing.

If the amount of time required to run turns is lowered, then TradeWars can be played by more people. As players of a game whose participation seems to be dropping each year, making the game more accessible should be a priority of ours. While making the game more accessible won't eliminate pseudo-duping, it may remove some of the necessity of it.

Update: Friday, April 30, 2004 7:17:33 PM

My profuse apologies to Cherokee, whom I misquoted badly. TW Chess does not allow megacorping.

Bugs And Their Use
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Saturday, April 17, 2004 10:30:03 PM

Recently, players have been driven to a frenzy on TWGS.org over allegations of bug use. Father Cajone, Fugitives member, reported that Big12ozhog, who was part of the winning team of USO4, used a bug in a TW 3.11.55 game to photon and decloak traders in the StarDock sector, who were subsequently killed. The bug, which works by the use of multiple traders, allows someone to shoot photon missiles into fedspace in violation of the game design. Hog subsequently complained that <<Doctor Who>> used the well-known atmospheric q-cannon pod bug on his team first.

The events, which occurred on Black Sun TWGS in the Trader's Shootout game, prompted Vader to ban both Big12ozhog and <<Doctor Who>>. The game was subsequently closed since its outcome had been influenced unduly. A massive controversy has been ignited over who acted properly, who acted improperly, and what should have been done about the situation. Due to its depth and my severe lack of time, I cannot even begin to address this controversy here.

These events have brought back memories of both the inherent bugginess of TW 3 and what could be done about it. As I see it, we have three possible solutions to the problem of game bugs.

  1. Legalize: We could stop treating game bugs as "bugs" and attempt to play the game with bug use permitted. Flaws in the TWGS would become publicized and treated just like regular game features (albeit unintended ones). This would put an end to the secrecy around bugs and the "elitist monopoly" on their use. Gameplay styles would adapt to the existence of bugs, not the other way around. By allowing bug use, Ops would no longer find themselves responsible for enforcing a rule that is difficult to police. For those of you who laugh at the concept: Remember that the "mega rob" feature present in MBBS mode is actually an adaptation of an HVS MBBS bug. However, this solution brings with it several problems.
    • Consensus: If bug use information is released to the public, there would most likely be an increase in the number of traders using bugs (duh). While this would not be a problem on systems that allowed bug use, it would almost certainly become a problem (for the less ethically inclined) on systems which refused to allow bug use. SysOps who are not interested in legalizing bug use, lacking the proper enforcement tools, may find themselves swamped with rule violations and forced to revise their policies.
    • Playability: As I mentioned above, gameplay style would be forced to adapt to game bugs. However, in situations such as with the fedspace photon bug, it may be difficult— even impossible— to adapt current tactics to the bug. As others have commented on, there may well be bugs in TW 3.11.x that, if released, would make the game utterly unplayable. If these bugs are released and their usage is allowed, problems would certainly result. If a SysOp wanted to have anything other than a free-for-all on all known bugs, appropriate policing methods would have to be developed.
  2. Enforce: At present, Ops do not have the tools with which to actively identify bug users. As I have proposed on several occasions, a server-side proxy could detect this and other rule violations automatically. While this would do much to discourage bug use, there are also problems with this solution.
    • Accuracy: A bug tracking system would need to have a near-100% accuracy in catching every offense, every time, with no false-positives. Fortunately, since the TradeWars environment is somewhat limited (with respect to what kind of text can appear), this kind of accuracy should be possible to achieve if the developers do their job properly.
    • Openness: Rule enforcement software, given the extreme trust we must place in it, must be developed in an entirely open and audit-able manner. I will never trust a closed-source program to reliably, without bias or ill-motivation on the part of its author, report violations which would be used to determine the outcome of the game.
    • Consensus: In order to comply with Openness, the bugs policed by this system must be public knowledge. This creates a problem for SysOps who do not want to run this (hypothetical) rule enforcer software, since the list of bugs policed could be, with some effort, reverse-engineered into a list of bugs, ripe and ready for use on systems without the rule software installed.
  3. Wait For Updates: In most circumstances, the best possible thing that can be done about bugs is what we have been pressing for all along: eliminate them! Had Black Sun been running release 61, in which both the atmospheric q-cannon pod bug and the fedspace photon bug are fixed, I would not be writing this article. SysOps have been cautious (and rightly so) in applying the latest cutting/bleeding edge releases, and many systems still run the buggy but otherwise stable v55. In time, the problem of bugs may simply fix itself as long as EIS releases patches at regular intervals to correct known bugs. However, this solution is dependent entirely on JP's continued support and development of TW 3. It may become necessary to resort to one of the solutions above.

If the above is to be believed, there is no perfect solution to our bug infestation. While it is unlikely that a consensus will ever be reached on how to best solve the problem of game bugs, that does not imply that we should not attempt one. I think that the TWGS community, as a whole, needs to come up with an agreeable solution to this dilemma. Otherwise, it is likely that controversies like this one will occur repetitively.

News Scarcity
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Wednesday, April 14, 2004 8:37:34 PM

I never would have imagined when I opened this site that EIS would release new versions faster than I would release new posts. Yet, here they are with revision 61— upgrade if you dare.

I apologize for the lack of updates, but there seems to have been a shortage of decent news recently. If you feel there is something I have missed, please don't hesitate to contact me.

EIS Posts v59, Hosting Problems Continue
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Saturday, April 3, 2004 3:20:13 PM

EIS software posted an update to the TWGS software yesterday, releasing version 3.11.59. Unfortunately, the server problems that have plagued their forums for some time have continued. Some users reported problems, including HTTP 502 errors (which are usually indicative of a service overload), while attempting to download the update. In response, Naz has posted a mirror of the file on TWGS.org.

An EIS representative notes that this release "is just a quick fix revision to fix some particularly nasty bugs from .58" (EIS Forums, 4/3/04). It seems, from the past and current release notes, that EIS's new message handling features are somewhat buggy, which indicates poor testing and quality control. I would like to encourage SysOps to apply future patches and updates with caution, lest they prove more buggy than their old version.

Updated: Sunday, April 4, 2004 10:05:16 PM

The wrong file was posted to the EIS website. v59 has been re-released as v60. Get it here.

Editorial: Naz Responds to TWGS.org Changes
Editorial Author: Nazwes Chaiwind
Posted By: Cbs228
Posted: Sunday, March 28, 2004 10:32:13 PM
The views stated in this editorial do not represent the opinions of Fugitives From Fate.

This addition of Google ads is the third trial that I've made to banneradvertise on twgs.org. The other two times were with different adnetworks, the first time, the ads were removed after being online for lessthan 48 hours because of their high bandwidth use, their interference withnavigation, and their total lack of relevance.

The second time, I left them on for considerably longer. They weregraphical, but with no popups. However, after a few months, they wereremoved because there just wasn't enough benefit having them there.

The Google Ads are still in their trial period because:

  1. I was not aware of interference with navigation. There are nopop-ups, pop-unders, or "cute little flash buy-me cartoons".
  2. On other forums where I use Google ads, the ads shown are usuallyrelevant to the messages being displayed.
  3. Google ads are not bandwidth intensive. They are text-based. Theyconsist of four text links that change each time a different page isdisplayed. I don't consider them to be an annoyance on any sites thatI visit which use them.

Google ads will have their fair trial run on twgs.org, but they won'tremain the long banner at the top for long, now that I'm aware of themcausing navigation problems for people.

Your email is the first complaint I've received so far about the Googleads. Now that I know about Timberwolf's complaint as well, and that itnow requires extra scrolling, I do agree that that is creating a problemwith navigation, and the ad format will be changed to something lessproblematic once I've got my current outstanding schoolwork done (thiscoming week is my last week of classes).

Also, a message to all TW players: if you have a problem with anything ontwgs.org, make sure that I know about it. This is not accomplished bypublicly bitching about your problems on web sites that I don't normallyhave time to read (cough cough Timberwolf).

Nazwes Chaiwind

TWGS.org No Longer "Annoyance Free"
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Friday, March 26, 2004 9:01:40 PM

Nazwes Chaiwind has added a Google AdWord banner to the top of TWGS.org. No formal announcement or explanation for the change has been given. This is an interesting move for Naz, who first opened the forums as an alternative to the advert-besieged Yahoo forums, which have been rendered next to inoperable by profiteering marketers with their increasingly invasive, user-unfriendly, messages. The banner stands in contrast to the login message, which reads: "Welcome to twgs.org, your annoyance-free Trade Wars forum!" (3/26/04, emph. added). Apparently, Naz is not making enough money off of his T-shirts.

Credit for this article must be given where it is due: Timberwolf was the first to pick up on this. I use Mozilla Firefox with the AdBlock package-- consequently, I don't see any of it.

Rev Calls USO4 Early
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Monday, March 22, 2004 6:05:19 PM

To no-one's surprise, the reverend has announced that USO4 is officially over. As expected, the Space Tyrants have mopped up all remaining resistance after the first night's fiasco. News of the win has yet to be posted to the USO official website.

TWArchive Relocating
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Monday, March 15, 2004 4:31:15 PM

Liquid Chaos has informed me via email that the TWArchive is being relocated to a faster server. The site will be offline for the duration of the move. Be sure to visit it here when it comes online again.

TWGazette Is Back
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Sunday, March 14, 2004 3:12:03 PM

Due to a budget crunch, Timberwolf was forced to take his news site off the air. Now, love him or hate him, he's back again on ISP-provided webspace. Wolf is not the first person to make an unexpected return from a lengthy absence, nor is it likely that he'll be the last. I once wrote that "It is eminently difficult to simply walk away from a game like TradeWars" (7/8/03). Its truth has been proven, repetitively and consistently, ever since then. Looking back on the number of people who have made their returns, and departures, it seems to me that you can never really leave this game. TradeWars is for life.

EIS Warns of Virus Faking Contact Info
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Wednesday, March 10, 2004 11:38:59 AM

Perhaps the "OT" designation I gave to my previous post on security was rather undeserved. EIS has announced that a version of W32.Beagle.J has begun sending emails "From" management *at* eisonline . com. It is important to note that EIS is not the source of the virus. Ironically, the virus disguises itself as an anti-virus patch. Most likely, the virus is being mass-mailed by an infected TradeWars player who has the above EIS address in their mail client's addressbook.

In the absence of any sincere effort by some to keep their machines safe, I would like to recommend that TWGS SysOps conduct periodic nmap (or equivalent) scans of all connected users.

I say again, don't open email attachments! As a side note, emails originating from me will always be cryptographically signed to prevent header forging.

Don't Photon Me-- Or I'll Sue You!
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Tuesday, March 9, 2004 9:05:44 PM

It is difficult to determine which situation is more laughable: Is <<Doctor Who>> just joking, or is he really serious when he says he intends to sue users of automatic photon scripts? If indeed such a scenario comes to pass, I know of a certain website (with a history of inadvertently DDoSing networks) who would be very interested in the story. Bring on the lawyers, Doc, I'll just rent a bulletproof server in China for all of my TW scripts. :)

In other news today, Cbs228 filed for patent protection on "any device used to respond to events automatically in any text-based multiplayer game."

Mana Knight and EleqTrizi'T Merge Sites
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Tuesday, March 9, 2004 2:31:45 PM

In what Mana Knight has jokingly termed a "hostile takeover" bid, TradeWars.org is merging with The StarDock. Both sites have an extensive TradeWars history, listing news in their archives as far back as January 2000. Mana Knight's sense of humor will be assimilated into The StarDock in the very near future, and I expect that the end result will be a new, impressive, site for TW players to enjoy. For further details, read EleqTrizi'T's post.

OT: Security
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Saturday, March 6, 2004 11:13:46 PM
Off Topic Notice: This article has no relation to TradeWars or Fugitives From Fate.

It is not often I make an offtopic post, but news has been slow lately and I feel this is something everyone needs to hear... badly.

The average user might not be too concerned with keeping their machine current on the scores of patches from their OS vendor. They might not have a firewall on or even a basic Antivirus package. They may think that no-one has an interest in their machine, or they're not online enough to get attacked. I want to dispel these myths right away.

According to Dr Peter Tippett, chief technologist at security specialist Trusecure, every internet address in the world is attacked in some form by a human being 40 or 50 times every day. But that's not all - every address is also hit five or 10 times every minute by an automated, computer-based attack (IT Week, emp. added).

This means that if you're on the internet, you are going to get hit with an automatic attack... even if you're just a dialup user. If you're system is unpatched then it is only a matter of time until something gets in there (like the Midas guy, I guarantee it) and installs things like:

  • An open SMTP server for spam relaying, eating up all your bandwidth and CPU cycles, and making your ISP pull the plug on you faster than you can say "Buy illegal narcotics here."
  • A SOCKS or other proxy for anonymous web browsing as you. Don't ask what they're looking at, you probably don't want to know.
  • RLogin services and other "backdoor" programs for remote shell access complete with root/system privileges.
  • Programs to DDoS a website, eating up all your bandwidth and most of your CPU cycles in the process.
  • Dialers to call 900 numbers or a foreign country, racking up charges on your phone bill at an insane rate.
  • Keystroke recorders to intercept all of the passwords and credit card numbers that you type in, regardless of whether or not the connection is via SSL (for credit cards) or employs digest authentication (for passwords).
  • Having the virus sent free of charge to all your friends and buddies, masquerading as one of your friends.


If you do not patch your system, you are begging for any and all of the above to hit you. You risk getting your internet disconnected, and you risk credit card/financial information fraud. If you're too lazy to patch, do the world-at-large a favor: unplug your machine and don't come back.

Furthermore, for maximum security, I recommend:

  • A/V software... and update it.
  • AdAware or Spybot S & D to catch what your A/V isn't programmed to.
  • Firewall software with all inbound ports from the internet blocked (with exceptions for your servers)... preferably one with IDS and/or SPI. Application-layer firewalls are probably a good idea, but you don't really need one. Remember, NetBios and Windows File Sharing are things that should never be internet accessible.
  • Optional: Security scans via websites or a more comprehensive program such as nessus (for both *nix and Windows, especially if you run a server of any sort). If you want me to scan you, just ask.
  • Don't use IE or Outlook [Express]. Use Firebird or Mozilla and install the AdBlocker package. It makes the internet look a whole lot less cluttered and you'll wonder why you ever used IE.
  • Never open an email attachment from any source. Most viruses will masquerade as someone you know. Do not trust the text contained in the "From" field-- it is not verified. If receive an attachment unexpectedly, email the "sender" and ask for confirmation before you do anything with it. Be a human virus scanner and don't open executables. Viruses propogate faster than your anti-virus updates, so don't count on that to save you.

Patch now or get yelled at by your tech friend later (and it could be me) when you have 600+ pieces of spyware, mail relayers, and backdoor programs installed on your system. Secure yourself or get "0wned and r00t3d by a l33t haxor." The choice is yours.

TWAwards Results Posted
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Thursday, February 26, 2004 11:06:16 PM

Cherokee has posted the results of the 2003 TradeWars Awards at The Lost Trader's Tavern. Congratulations to Fugitives member Father Cajone, who won the Best Sportsmanship award. A big thanks goes to Cherokee for devoting his time and bandwidth into hosting the awards. Worthy of mention here is the latest addition to the Hall of Fame: The former Coastgames TWGS, which closed down in early December. For those of you who didn't win this year: There is always 2004.

EIS Releases .58
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Monday, February 23, 2004 10:13:08 PM

Almost as if making up for lost time, EIS has released version 58. The new release includes a welcome fix for the non-interactive prompts: SysOps can now choose to deactivate this strange new "feature" via TEDIT. Reversing its apparently scripting-hostile stance, EIS has also added an extended ascii character to assist scripts in determining the current prompt.

USO: Forums Digest
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Sunday, February 22, 2004 4:32:51 PM

In the hours and days following the bizarre conclusion of USO (at least for most of us), the TWGS.org forum erupted into a series of flame messages. Nonetheless, for those of you who do not want to take the time to wade through the various USO threads, I do feel that two messages are worthy of attention here.

In message 23190, the reverend (the USO GameOp) posted his reaction to what happened. He writes, "it was not until after the TWA file had been available for a few days that i learned about the plan to blow dock. of course i could not do anything at that point but watch and wait." With the edits already finalized, Rev could not make changes without appearing to deliberately undermine Xide's strategy. Conversely, by refusing to change the edits Rev ensured an early end to the game, much to the disappointment of many. Whatever decision Rev made was certain to provoke an outcry from one side or the other. Rev expresses his sincere regrets for what transpired two nights ago.

Tournament SysOps have frequently had to make decisions like this. In BOTE 2003, Macahan's decision to reinsert a player who was deleted by a bug was met with similar strife.

Xide reveals in message 23208 that his decisive start was far from easy. As I suspected, Xide "had 3-4 practice sessions of the whole routine" and put a lot of effort into his start. In this game, it is usually the most dedicated who win. Xide's team appears to have been the most dedicated. His original plan called for a dock kill within 30 minutes, not 90. Problems encountered during the execution of the plan delayed Corp 1's move.

While many teams, including Bone Collector's, Timborulz's, and my own, outright refuse to kill dock as part of our playing strategy, the fact of the matter is that there is no rule against doing so. In order to prevent this type of behavior in the future, there must either be a formal rule against dock killing, changes to the game structure to prevent dock killing (i.e. a new release from EIS), or a stronger StarDock to discourage dock killing.

USO Surprise: Corp 1 Wins in Record Time!
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Saturday, February 21, 2004 1:02:57 AM

At 12:38:34 AM EST, this is what the USO Stardock sector looked like:

Command [TL=00:00:00]:[5012] (?=Help)? : D  

Sector  : 5012 in The Federation. 
Beacon  : FedSpace, FedLaw Enforced
Ports   :  <=-DANGER-=>  Scanners indicate massive debris and heavy
                       radiation due to recent destruction of the 
                       StarPort that occupied this sector. Safety 
                       officer advises immediate retreat from sector. 
Observer: Ambassador rev, w/ Massive Fighter Escort,
           aboard The U.S.S. . (Martin Ind Consular Vessel)
Federals: Captain Zyrain, w/ 75,000 ftrs, 
           in The U.S.S. Intrepid (Martin Ind Federation StarShip)  
Traders : Civilian Father Cajone [4], w/ 0 ftrs,
           in Egg (Sverdlov Speedy Cruiser)
          Civilian Lance [6], w/ 2 ftrs,
           in heh (Axis Industries FC-FURB)
          Corporal traitor [6], w/ 99 ftrs,
           in The Usurper (BK BananoTran) 
          Civilian fearme [3], w/ 40 ftrs,  
           in Starter (4 Dragons Ltd Speedy Cruiser)
          Sergeant Major Shyenkur [7], w/ 99 ftrs,  
           in Newbie (Martel Matra Speedy Cruiser)  
          Civilian Prophet [4], w/ 0 ftrs,  
           in ... (4 Dragons Ltd FC-FURB) 
          Sergeant Major Jasper [8], w/ 387 ftrs, 
           in Train Wreck (BK BananoTran) 
          Sergeant Major Black Fox [3], w/ 290 ftrs,
           in Home (AldenShrike Speedy Cruiser)
          Sergeant Major Ranger One [9], w/ 47 ftrs,
           in Two (Dzerhinsky FC-FURB)  
          Gunnery Sergeant Xide [1], w/ 22,303 ftrs,
           in . (Puppet Masters Manufacture Rawhead Rex)
          Civilian Alani [7], w/ 93 ftrs, 
           in y (Bofors Speedy Cruiser)
          Sergeant Major arucard [7], w/ 61 ftrs, 
           in ship (Antarian Speedy Cruiser)
          Civilian Kemper3 [9], w/ 20 ftrs,
           in . (Sverdlov FC-FURB)  
          Gunnery Sergeant Jhereg [3], w/ 1,200 ftrs, 
           in Starter (4 Dragons Ltd Speedy Cruiser)
          Civilian prestone [2], w/ 51 ftrs,
           in a (Murene Elec'Tric'Mule)
          Sergeant Major Deimos [7], w/ 11 ftrs,
           in . (BK BananoTran)
          Sergeant Major Krimsonblade [3], w/ 575 ftrs,
           in Doh (IonStream Speedy Cruiser)
          Civilian Kasey [3], w/ 70 ftrs, 
           in Jones (Martel Matra Speedy Cruiser) 
          Civilian White Knight [4], w/ 0 ftrs,
           in Ship B (QuadStar FC-FURB)
          Sergeant River Rat [4], w/ 0 ftrs,
           in [F3SS] Xfer (Seeschlange FC-FURB)
          Sergeant Major Underlord [7], w/ 49 ftrs,
           in The Merchant Marines (Murene Elec'Tric'Mule)  
          Sergeant Major Blue Adept [9], w/ 19 ftrs,
           in The Late Marines (Pescador Elec'Tric'Mule)
          Civilian Phoe6e [9], w/ 95 ftrs,  
           in zoom (Martin Ind FC-FURB)
          Civilian Elderprophet [6], w/ 83 ftrs,
           in Merchant Marines (QuadStar Speedy Cruiser)
          Sergeant Major dpblues [8], w/ 186 ftrs,  
           in tran (BK BananoTran)  
Ships   : YAWN [Owned by] LokI, w/ 81 ftrs,
           (Pescador Elec'Tric'Mule)
          ... [Owned by] Fugitives From Fate [4], w/ 0 ftrs,
           (QuadStar FC-FURB) 
          BluesMobile [Owned by] GeNoCiDe [8], w/ 114 ftrs,
           (Animoso Elec'Tric'Mule)
          The Merchant Marines [Owned by] Suicide Kings [6], w/ 99 ftrs,
           (Bitubo Elec'Tric'Mule)  
          . [Owned by] Damage Unlimited [2], w/ 9 ftrs,
           (QuadStar Elec'Tric'Mule)
          Cash 1 [Owned by] Phoenix Rising [3], w/ 127 ftrs,
           (IonStream Elec'Tric'Mule) 
          . [Owned by] Space Tyrants [1], w/ 0 ftrs,
           (Puppet Masters Manufacture Rawhead Rex)
          . [Owned by] Busted Flush [7], w/ 50 ftrs,
           (High Velocity Ltd FC-FURB)  
          . [Owned by] Space Tyrants [1], w/ 0 ftrs,
           (Bitubo Gravedigr Body Bag)  
          . [Owned by] Xide, w/ 0 ftrs,
           (Seeschlange FC-FURB)
          . [Owned by] Space Tyrants [1], w/ 0 ftrs,
           (Yokotosaki Gravedigr Body Bag)  
          Tran [Owned by] Star Endeavors [9], w/ 0 ftrs,
           (BK BananoTran)  
          . [Owned by] Space Tyrants [1], w/ 0 ftrs,
           (Sverdlov CK-ORION)  
          . [Owned by] Space Tyrants [1], w/ 0 ftrs,
           (Bofors CK-ORION)
          . [Owned by] Space Tyrants [1], w/ 0 ftrs,
           (Talos CK-ORION)
          . [Owned by] Space Tyrants [1], w/ 0 ftrs,
           (4 Dragons Ltd Peacemaker ISS) 
          . [Owned by] Space Tyrants [1], w/ 0 ftrs,
           (Puppet Masters Manufacture Rawhead Rex)
          . [Owned by] Space Tyrants [1], w/ 0 ftrs,
           (Rouge Nation Prestone Frigate)  
          . [Owned by] Space Tyrants [1], w/ 0 ftrs,
           (Antarian Gravedigr Body Bag)
          . [Owned by] Space Tyrants [1], w/ 0 ftrs,
           (Mainstay Ltd Gravedigr Body Bag)
Warps to Sector(s) :  (3995) - (4741) - (6902) - (7139) - 7296 - (8259)

Command [TL=00:00:00]:[5012] (?=Help)? : C  

<Computer activated>

Computer command [TL=00:00:00]:[5012] (?=Help)? T 

00:38:34 AM Sun Feb 21, 2016

Computer command [TL=00:00:00]:[5012] (?=Help)? Q

The above is the handiwork of Corp 1: Xide, Cherokee, Tweety, <<Doctor Who>>, Didaskalos, and big12ozHog.

How did the StarDock get blown within the first 1.5 hours? The answer is the aged game which allowed reds to gain massive experience points-- 50 per first port on every port-- and start cashing. Corp 1 was the fastest off of the starting block; they must have practiced this extensively or were otherwise prepared. Within 2 hours, C1 had accumulated 60k+ figs, several Rawhead Rexs (BattleShip edit), and plenty of gtorps for planets. If you were looking for a long game, this wasn't it.

The Fugitives team has voted unanimously: We hereby concede the game. After careful evaluation, we have found that our chances of winning are precisely nil, and we do not want to drag a one night game to 60 days.

C1's tactics have been ruled a fair and valid use of the edits, and I personally agree despite the overall lameness of the situation-- we, and I mean all other players in general, should have been better prepared for this. We have seen an excellent showing from the Space Tyrants, and I am not embarrassed to lose to them... much. Corp 1 will always go down in history as the fastest Major winners.

On edits in general, Fugitives player Prophet remarked, "the best tourneys in the past have always been stock... bote 1, wtc 01, uso 1... wtc 2001 was... see a trend here?." Several other players agreed with this assessment, including myself. Something that may seem small (game age) can actually have a large effect if tinkered with. This is not the first tournament to experience early dock blowing (think back to Lethal Lotto). Hopefully, if precautions are taken, it will be the last.

USO: Better Latest, Than Never
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Friday, February 20, 2004 3:58:33 PM

Fugitives From Fate was the last corp to sign up for USO, submitting our entry a mere 15 minutes before the deadline. Nonetheless, we are locked and loaded to begin a new game. Prepare yourself for 60 days of invasions and evasions, of combat on the field of honor; defeat and victory intertwined. Grab a can of carbonated caffeine and prepare for some big bangs after The Big Bang at 10:00:00 PM tonight.

For the occasion, please welcome aboard River Rat and White Knight as Associate Members for USO4. Also participating are Father Cajone, Zep, Prophet, and myself, of course. See our current games page for more information.

Before USO starts, be sure to head over to TLTT and vote in the TWAwards. Voting will begin at 7 PM EST.

v57 Released
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Tuesday, February 17, 2004 11:33:41 AM

EIS released TradeWars version 3.11.57 today. The new release fixes the FedSpace photon bug, the time synchronization bug, the login penalty bug, and a few other things as well.

Despite the vociferous protest of many, further changes to the in-game messaging system have been made that decrease its overall effectiveness. Messages are now queued whenever a player enters a "non-interactive" prompt and are only sent after the player leaves that prompt. This is a potentially dangerous modification, since messages such as "F#$&! Help, the base is being invaded!" are ones that people need to receive immediately. It is interesting to note that this is being pushed as a new "feature" and not as a bugfix. Fortunately, the release notes seem to indicate that this behavior can be disabled in TEDIT. Ops are encouraged to disable this new behavior if possible.

Vader Interviews Cbs
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Monday, February 16, 2004 9:49:03 PM

Without further ado, I present my answers to Vader's interview questions below.

How and when did you get started in Tradewars?

My first experience with TradeWars was on a local dialup BBS with MacComCenter and a 38.8k modem, much to the annoyance of my parents, who didn't want me tying up the phone line. I joined the game after being asked to do so by a friend at school (who never was and never will be a serious player). I was not a very good player at the time and did not know anyone who was, and thus I eventually dropped it. When I joined, the internet was just getting started while the dialup BBS's were dying off in droves-- The BBS closed down not long after I first got there.

Fast forward a few years to 1999. I accidentally discovered that TradeWars had made the leap from dialup terminals to telnet. This time, however, I made an effort to get my hands on some effective strategies and learn how to play properly. My first tcp/ip game was a 20k sector/20k turn/no photons game at Frogland BBS. Me and heyyou tried for months to fend off The Founder, but we were ultimately unsuccessful.

Who has been your major influence/influencers in the game?

Although neither heyyou nor The Founder are active players nowadays, I'm think I'm ready for that rematch ;) Founder beat my newbie-self into a pulp on numerous occasions, and when I thought it couldn't get any worse he kept the attacks coming. I hated every minute of it, but I learned a few things too.

I sit here today wondering what has become of my Think Different team of mac users. My former teammates, Mad Maxx, Caliban, and Madill, have totally left the game with the exception of the occasional email.

The Reverend has given me some sound scripting advice over the years. When I need some advice and don't know where to turn, I know he'll be there.

Hats off to all of the members of Fugitives From Fate and the others who have corped with us: I know that each of you strive to do your very best.

Who do you normally corp with?

Most of the people I corp with are Fugitives members. There are some others who are not on that list but are worth mentioning: Alexio, banano, Sir Lancelot, Mythrandir, River Rat, and White Knight.

How did you come up with your TW handle and what does it mean?

My TW handle is my internet handle in general. When the internet was first getting started, my parents got an AOL account (I'd never use AOL today, of course). I wanted my own screenname, and I was typing various permutations of my name until I found a screenname that wasn't already taken: "Cbs" (My initials: Colin B. Stagner) and "228" (The day I signed up: February 28). I continue to use the name Cbs228 to this day, mostly out of the desire to be known only by one name instead of many. But maybe I'll think of something better... Right Phoe6e? ;-)

Who have been your favorite people to play with over the years? why?

Of all of my corpies, I have known Father Cajone and zep the longest. Father Cajone makes a reliable (though non-combative) blue, and zep is equally skilled at red. We've had some good times, some not so good times, and some just plain boring times over the years in more games than I can count.

As enemies, I respect Blue Adept, <<Doctor Who>>, Prestone, and Kemper3 for their skill. Any one of these people will give you a sound threshing.

Are there any individuals you would like to play with but never had the opportunity?

I would enjoy being able to "pick the brains" of the Star Endeavors perma since I seem to be a horrible strategist. I can do anything in TW, but figuring out when to do it seems to be the greatest puzzle of all. The Star Endeavors has some of the best strategists I have ever seen, and they will probably continue their killing spree for quite some time.

Any Major games you have won? when and with whom?

The only Major I have won (not for lack of trying, mind you) was the hotly-contested WTC 2002. The GoodGuys sent in a mega corp under the expectation that others would do the same. No other mega corps materialized, however, and the game was easily won. It was absolutely no fun since all I did was sit in a protected bubble and push my AutoSDT button once a day.

What programs/helpers are part of your TW arsenal?

During my first game at Frogland I took an interest in scripting, haven been planet dropped by The Founder more times than I could count. I immediately hit a wall, of course, since the sum total of helpers and scripts for the MacOS was (at that time) nil, and my existing telnet client had the script capability of a large concrete block. I spent hours crawling the internet until I found a telnet client that was sufficiently scriptable. From there I proceeded to (over the course of a year or so) build basic evil scripts, colonizers, and an Adjacent Photon bot that had an alarm function and auto reconnect, which I used on my newly-rolled DSL line in earnest.

A few months and several games later, I ended up connecting with two other mac users, Caliban and Dark Rider (neither of whom are active today), in a game against Peacemaker and his team, "The Dark." UPDATE (2/17/04): I previously indicated that it was Kemper3's team. While Kemper did participate, Peacemaker was the CEO. Thank you for the information, Kemper. END UPDATE. Once more I found myself outmatched by new strategies such as pwarp photon, and once more I adapted. My original client was not intended for TradeWars, and AppleScript can't handle the data processing for advanced CIM functions quickly enough to be effective.

In 2002 I started using Dark Rider's helper, TWScripter v3. I ported over all of my old scripts and spent the summer in a caffeine-induced coding frenzy in a dead game at a no-name server. The result of all of this effort was the beginnings of some of my more advanced scripts, including AutoSDT (A "one touch" evil solution that is compatible with Rev's) and BotScript, which I consider to be one of the most advanced AFK defense bots ever used.

Where are the main servers you play now?

This is a redundant question. See below.

Which servers are your favorite to play and why?

Some of my favorite servers-- Frogland, Hardcoded, and Coastgames-- are gone today. It's too bad that they're gone, but there are plenty of others.

Some of my current favorites include: The Game BBS, Alienbase, The Lost Trader's Tavern, and (my favorite test server) Terra. These servers have excellent uptime, low latency, and an Op I can trust.

Any advice you could give to a newer player just entering TW?

Be ready to die. Then be ready to die some more. Although this has a tendency to make people miserable, it is both standard and effective to teach people by killing them. That being said, however, if you're dying repeatedly in the same way then something's not going right. If a person who kills you refuses to give you any information about how s/he got you, then s/he is just being a moron. Please be sure to ask them about it in a levelheaded manner; merely throwing insults at them is bound to provoke another kill. If they don't explain it, then there are plenty of people at the TradeWars 2002 School forum who can and will answer your question (be sure to search for it, since it's probably been asked before). Find and use a counter-tactic to whatever method they used to kill you, and (the important part) try again. It can take 1 year or more to really become proficient at the game.

In addition to the above, be sure to find a nice, out of the way, game to start in. Your odds of success will be greatly increased if you can find someone, anyone, who is more proficient than you are and is willing to take you on as a corpie. Be sure to take advantage of "Big Game"-style tournaments with open signups and randomized, large, teams, or any other game that is flagged as "newbie-friendly." Become proficient at blue (positive alignment) play before attempting red (negative alignment), and do anything else you can to make it harder for people to kill you (such as playing in games without photons).

If you are in need of some bathroom reading, then Traitor's website will keep you busy for quite some time.

What would you like your legacy in TW to be after you are gone from the community?

If v3 outlasts me, and I am beginning to doubt that, I would like to leave behind my scripts for others to use. They are already available, but only to Mac users since the scripting system relies on Apple's Open Scripting Architecture (OSA). I do not maintain an official release page because the demand for it is nil, and there's simply too much code for me to document properly. If you want them, just ask me.

I will certainly leave behind the Fugitives From Fate website. I have hopes that the perma will outlive me (at least as far as my participation in TW is concerned) but, even if it does not, the website certainly will.

Are there any TW projects you are a part of that you are excited about?

Liquid Chaos has recently opened the TWArchive. The site was one of my ideas, although not a direct product of my work. Only time will tell if T-Warriors are actually interested in it.

I have been a longtime advocate of the use of server-side proxying for fun and security.

In the absence of rapid-response debugging from EIS, it is possible to build a program that uses active proxying or passive packet capture (similar to tcpdump) to scan the sessions of every player, looking for bug use. User activity, suspicious or otherwise, could be recorded to the server's disk and used as evidence to enforce server rules. Server-side proxies could be used to give a TWX-like scripting interface that is integrated into the game-- perfect for newer players who don't have scripts and don't want to pay to use them. Additionally, packet capture could be used to record the "interesting moments" of each game for public release once the game is over. Imagine being able to view an invasion from the perspective of each of the invaders and each of the invadees just as it happened during the game. All this and more would be possible if such a program was developed.

Unfortunately, I am not a Windows desktop programmer, nor do I have access to a Windows machine (and, no, I don't want one). Until someone takes it upon themselves to build what I have described (and reaps the profit from selling it), it will only remain an idea.

Any last thoughts you would like to give?

There are those of you who resent my tactic of AFK defense, but consider this: The advent of 24x7 connections means that some teams can, by selecting players who are either nocturnal or live in other parts of the world, have at least one person physically present and at keys... 24x7. This gives rise to a serious disparity in playing power, since other teams can fend off invasions actively while others must risk the outcome of the game to TradeWars' woefully inadequate "built-in defenses." To preserve your base it is vital to keep the enemy out of the sector, but this is impossible with the current defenses available in TradeWars (massive building aside).

Enter the TradeWars Bot: A piece of code, to be true, but it is also a piece of code written by a human doing (if it works correctly) exactly what that human would do if faced with those same circumstances (i.e. an invasion). Bots are the great equalizer of this game because they allow everyone-- not just an elite cadre of players who have nothing better to do-- to be at keys 24x7. No longer must one team fall unexpectedly because of mere chance.

By deploying a bot I am not trying to prevent combat action except in the short term. My bot allows me to "time shift" combat action to a more convenient hour when my team and I can be at keys to defend ourselves properly. I outright refuse to fight battles while I am either half-asleep, not at keys, or simply far too vulnerable to attack at the moment. Would anyone voluntarily place themselves at such a disadvantage: To have all that you have built, along with your chances of winning, fall victim to enemy attack because you're asleep and they are not? If that is what the TradeWars community demands, then I no longer wish to be a part of it.

Whether you love it or hate it, I will continue to deploy bot code so long as the TradeWars gaming system allows it.

Liquid Chaos Opens TW Archive
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Sunday, February 15, 2004 2:50:39 PM

In response to an article of mine entitled "TW History: Error 404," Liquid Chaos has created an archival page for TradeWars-related sites. Anyone can submit material for archiving into the following categories: Tournaments, Websites, TW Servers, Articles, and Miscellaneous. To submit a site to the archive, simply email Liquid Chaos.

Liquid Chaos is best known throughout the TradeWars community as the designer of Hardcoded's web portal, Planet TW. Thank you, LC, for devoting your time, bandwidth, and PHP coding skills into making my idea a reality.

This archive system will only work if people submit sites for archiving. If you know or run a website that is scheduled to be taken down, please take the time to submit it for archival. It is the only way we can close the open wound of vanishing information and preserve our history as a community.

7th Annual TWAwards at EIS TLTT
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Thursday, February 12, 2004 7:59:40 PM

Harley Nuss has announced that the 7th annual TWAwards will be hosted at the EISonline forums. Be sure to register for an account at EIS or update your email address to ensure your account is not purged.

Last year's TWAwards were hosted by Cherokee.

Update: Saturday, February 14, 2004 2:23:30 PM

The TWAwards have been mysteriously moved back to The Lost Trader's Tavern. Even the original announcement at the EISonline forums has been removed, and no explanation has been given for the change. Cherokee will be accepting nominations until 7 PM EST on February 20 (this Thursday!). You will need to register for an account (and only one) at TLTT to vote in the awards. Final voting will commence on February 20th at 7 PM EST.

Update: Saturday, February 14, 2004 4:15:52 PM

Kemper3 has posted a message to TWGS.org explaining the sudden relocation of the TWAwards. He writes,

Gypsy decided last night that the forum modifications he wanted to do to run them was going to take more time than he had to spare at the moment. He asked if Cherokee and I could do them again this year, instead. (TWGS.org 22859).

Mystery solved.

Update: Wednesday, February 18, 2004 12:06:18 PM

One further correction to an already garbled article: Harley Nuss (Kemper3) did not post the original message to EIS, Gypsy did. I apologize for the misquote.

Damage Unlimited Server Attacked!
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Tuesday, February 10, 2004 12:23:35 AM

Bone Collector, a member of the Damage Unlimited and Fugitives permas, has informed me via ICQ that his TWGS [telnet link] Game "B" has been attacked by a malicious duper. The IP address of the offender is

Stagners-G3:~ cbs228$ whois -a

OrgName:    Sprint
OrgID:      SPDN
Address:    12502 Sunrise Valley Dr
City:       Reston
StateProv:  VA
PostalCode: 20196
Country:    US

NetRange: -
NetHandle:  NET-65-176-0-0-1
Parent:     NET-65-0-0-0-0
NetType:    Direct Allocation


Stagners-G3:~ cbs228$ host domain name pointer sdn-ap-030ilchicP0464.dialsprint.net.

Stagners-G3:~ cbs228$ traceroute
traceroute to (, 30 hops max, 40 byte packets
1  <deleted>
2  <deleted>
3  ge-8-0-166.ipcolo1.chicago1.level3.net (
4  so-7-0-0.bbr1.chicago1.level3.net (
5  so-6-0-0.edge1.chicago1.level3.net (
6  sprint-level3-oc48.chicago1.level3.net (
7  sl-bb22-chi-6-3.sprintlink.net (  
8  sdn-bb11-chi-6-0.dialsprint.net (
9  sdn-acr1-chi-0-0.dialsprint.net (
10  sdn-ap-030ilchic100f.dialsprint.net (

From the above, we can conclude that the offender was using a Sprintlink Dialup connection somewhere in the vicinity of Chicago, IL. The offender will most likely have an email address ending in sprint.net or dialsprint.net. Any and all system administrators are encouraged to review their logs and look for occurrences of Should you have any information regarding the offender, please contact Bone Collector at ZLC410 [at-sign] cox {a dot goes here} net or myself via this page.

To the attacker I say this: Your identity will not remain a secret forever. The TradeWars community will not tolerate attacks against its servers.

v56... Finally.
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Thursday, February 5, 2004 8:10:09 PM

For two years, TWGS v3.11.55 has been the only new release of the TWGS. Today, JP and the EISonline team finally released revision .56. Some of the more problematic (or potentially problematic) bugs have been fixed, including:

  • When a player is podded while attacking a planet, a pause allows the player to remain with the planet instead of being ejected back into space.
  • A number of bugs are related to the use of globals from game prompts.
  • A player who is online 24/7 can be booted after the inactive player delay.
  • In combat, when a ship flees, it is not fleeing over Corp-affiliated fighters.
  • The complete list of fixes is available at the TWGS Beta page.

Due to the lateness of the release and the limited amount of time available for testing, it is unlikely that USO4 will be run on v56. Unfortunately, this means that the GameOps will have to be on the lookout for the known v55 bugs that EIS has released to the public. The early adopters of v56, for the purposes of testing only, are Cherokee and Phoe6e. Cherokee will be hosting his Killer Instinct edits on v56 starting this friday, and Phoe6e has opened a v56 game server as well. Be sure to check either of these servers if you want a taste of v56.

In addition to the changelog on the TWGS Beta page, JP writes, "There's a major change with globals that will seriously slow down scripters" (TWForum Homepage). He does not elaborate on the change and nothing in the official changelog seems to greatly affect scripting. The community is left wondering what else, exactly, he has changed.

Update: Thursday, February 5, 2004 8:23:45 PM

Cherokee's game is located at twgs.thereverend.org:5123 instead of at the Lost Trader's Tavern, and it is open now.

USO: Website Operational
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Tuesday, February 3, 2004 9:40:58 PM

The reverend has posted the main website for USO 2004 (or, if you prefer, "USO4") over at Coastgames. Be sure to have your CEO sign up by February 14th if you plan on sending a team.

TWGS.org Email Problems
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Tuesday, February 3, 2004 5:40:19 PM

The vimar.ca SMTP server, which is used to send and receive emails for the TWGS.org online forum, is currently inoperative. Nazwes Chaiwind (the administrator) has assured me that he is aware of the problem and is working to correct it. A fix is expected sometime tonight or by Thursday at the latest. Any recent posts made to TWGS.org by email have not been (and may not ever be) received. Until the server is fixed, you can still use the web based interface for reading and posting.

Update: Wednesday, February 4, 2004 4:47:19 PM
SMTP access has been restored. We will now return you to your regularly scheduled flamewar...

Game Over, We Lose (... again)
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Tuesday, February 3, 2004 2:38:01 PM

Corp 3 has given us a thorough threshing over at TLTT in our latest corporate game. The game ended suddenly after a minor error on my part (pressing the wrong keys during a server lockup) led to the invasion of our planet (and me being stranded on one of the enemy's planets in the meanwhile). The final log files are below:

Cbs228 was blasted by a Quasar Cannon!
-- 02/03/16 -- 04:06:52 PM --
big12ozhog launched a Photon Missile somewhere!
-- 02/03/16 -- 04:07:26 PM --
big12ozhog was defeated invading RoiD!
-- 02/03/16 -- 04:08:16 PM --
big12ozhog was defeated invading RoiD!
-- 02/03/16 -- 04:08:42 PM --
big12ozhog was defeated invading RoiD!
-- 02/03/16 -- 04:08:55 PM --
big12ozhog invaded RoiD!
-- 02/03/16 -- 04:09:04 PM --
Cbs228 destroyed the Shields on .!
Cbs228 was blasted by a Quasar Cannon!
-- 02/03/16 -- 04:09:43 PM --
big12ozhog captured zep's BattleShip!
-- 02/03/16 -- 04:09:44 PM --
big12ozhog DESTROYED zep's ** Shuttlecraft **!
"Geez, big12ozhog, we just can't take you anywhere", zep states.
-- 02/03/16 -- 04:12:27 PM --
Cbs228 was defeated invading .!
Cbs228 posted this universal announcement:
I wasn't quite expecting it to end this way, but it seldom does.
Cbs228 posted this universal announcement:
Good show C2. It helps to have people at keys 24x7 instead of just 5x7.
Cbs228 was blasted by a Quasar Cannon!
Cbs228's ship was destroyed by a Quasar Cannon!
-- 02/03/16 -- 04:12:32 PM --
big12ozhog DESTROYED Cbs228's ** Shuttlecraft **!

This outcome was not entirely unexpected, however, since our team had been steadily losing ground in the grid war for some time, falling from 15% figged to 2% figged in less than 3 days. Because <<Doctor Who>> is located in the UK, offset -6 hours from U.S. Central Time, and his other team members here in the 'states were able to fill in the other timeslots, Corp 3 was able to have a man at keys nearly 24x7. In contrast, we were unable to have a real person at keys constantly as we have other obligations to attend to (school, work, family, etc). This, more than anything else, made a difference in the outcome of this game. With planet-gridding out of the question with these edits and predictor 'bots in the game, gridding while the enemy was at keys proved to be very hazardous to our health.

I have made an increased automation of attacks a priority of mine for future script modification.

Sadly, we did not outlive Corp 1 and ranked 3rd in the game.

Participating Players
Corp 1 - TBDCorp 3 - 3rdCorp 2 - TBD
Bone Collector
Father Cajone
the reverend
<<Doctor Who>>

Revised USO Scoring
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Sunday, February 1, 2004 7:08:42 PM

The reverend has posted the tentative USO edits and a revised scoring system to (the site that makes me feel like a 3rd wheel on occasion) TWGS.org. They are reprinted below:

USO Settings

MBBS mode (i might change this to TWGS mode, 10% rob, Normal combat penalties - im still thinking about it)
6 man corps
no death limit (yeah - no death limit)
high colo regen
100% port regen
100% trade percent
5000 sectors, plus 500 sectors for every corp that signs up, e.g. 4 corps,
7000 sectors
unlimited fed parking for the first week, no fed parking after that

USO Scoring

50 points -- each USO type planet, level 6 citadel, 6K colos, created by your corp
200 points -- each USO type planet, level 6 citadel, 6K colos, created by enemy corp
-10 points -- any kind of death
100 points -- player with zero deaths at the end of the game *
100 points -- player with the most deaths at the end of the game *
100 points -- player with the most experience at the end of the game *

* in the case of a tie, each player will receive the full 100 points, no splitting the prize
(the reverend, 22503).

As with most revisions to just about anything, there are things I like and things I dislike.

The Good:

  1. Planet Points: USO is, as always, a game that heavily rewards active invasions. In USO 2003, many corps abused the system by upgrading enemy SDT planets and "invading" them when the planet reached L2. This isn't really an invasion in the traditional sense since, besides making sure the enemy corp doesn't recapture them, no additional effort is needed to claim the invasion points. In USO4, this practice will be impossible as long as teams remember to make sure that their SDT planets are not USO-class. This change will also support planet gridding: There will be less of an incentive to try to capture gridding planets if teams use non-USO class planets. In addition, this system will be easier to track than the 2003 system since it only requires tallying at the end of the game. Kudos to the USO4 administration team for fixing the planet point rewards.
  2. Deathlimit: By all reports, having a formal deathlimit stifled the end of HHT 2002 and, at least for a time, effectively stalemated the game. When players are "on the bubble" (will be eliminated on next #SD#), they are far less likely to do anything dangerous such as grid or invade. This reduces the overall combat action in the game. If a player does not die, then they are either really good or just plain cowardly. A non-deathlimited game will not penalize bravery or reward cowardice, and it will also help keep the game "alive."
  3. Sectors: Having a dynamic number of sectors in the game prevents the universe from being too "empty" or too "crowded" based on the number of players in the game. 500 sectors sounds like a reasonable number to me.

The Bad:

  1. Death Points: Although there is no formal deathlimit, dying in USO4 will have a more adverse effect on your team's point standing than in USO3. Having all of your deaths in USO4 will be worth nearly twice as much as USO3 (100 pts vs 65 pts), but dying 5 times in USO4 will lose your team 50 points as opposed to 0 in USO3. Dying excessively could possibly put a team in the negative point range, although I doubt we will see this happen. Losing this many points per death (5 deaths is equivalent to losing a homemade USO planet) may have just as much of an adverse effect on the amount of combat action in this game as a formal limit.
  2. Kill Points (or Lack Thereof): Not having kill points makes things a lot easier on the Ops of USO4 since there will be no debate over what constitutes a "kill" and no kill counting will be necessary. Still, if USO is supposed to be a game that rewards (successful) combat action, then why are ship-to-ship kills not counted? Wouldn't it be better to reward successful kills than to punish teams for deaths that may not be combat-related?

The Just-Plain-Weird:

  1. Most Deaths and Most Exp: I fail to understand why the person with the most deaths should be rewarded (perhaps this is an attempt to make sure no team gets negative points). I also don't see how having the most experience points matters at all to the overall outcome of the game.

In conclusion, I feel that the USO4 edits are much simplified from the USO3 version and are easier for the Ops to track (a deliberate design, I'm sure). An important loophole has been patched and the troublesome deathlimit has been removed. Still, we'll just have to wait and see whether or not these edits are representative of how well the teams play.

v3 Bugs vs v4 Changes
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Thursday, January 29, 2004 3:02:37 PM

Traitor, whose website was voted Best Informational Site in last year's TWAwards, started a thread over at TWGS.org. He was considering posting information on known bugs in the TWGS v3.11.55 (current release). However, on further consideration, he decided that:

... I've decided that it's probably better if I don't. While the thought of lighting a fire under JP's toes to get him to release a patch is appealing, the fact that it's been two years since the last update, and the fact that he's known about these bugs for the same amount of time or longer, makes me think that posting the bugs I know about will only hasten the demise of the game... (TWGS.org 22483).

Perhaps the most interesting part of the thread is the assertion made by many users (including Traitor himself) that the current TradeWars release contains game-ruining bugs that, when released (notice I did not say "if"), will bring about the demise of TW v3. Based on this list, this is not an unrealistic assumption. TW v3 is based on older code dating back to the days of single-line BBS's; the concept of "multiplayer" had yet to be invented. Although JP and others have tried to make the game playable by revising the code, their efforts have been only partially successful. To fix these bugs would require a complete rewrite, which JP intends to do for v4.

According to this post at the EISonline forums, JP is making major revisions to not only the code, but the style of gameplay as well. My overall opinion of v4, based on this and other available information, is that v4 will be TradeWars For Idiots. Scripted attacks: Removed. Fig hit/event messages: Removed. Capabilities for online defense: Severely Limited. In one fell swoop, JP will remove the most challenging aspects of the game in favor of a more single-player environment with very little combat or interaction between players. Due to output-incompatibility, most (if not all) scripts and helpers will be rendered inoperable and require major updates. Because of these major changes, which are being made in order to make the game more popular, JP risks alienating existing TradeWars players. Granted, v3 games will be retained in the v4 server, but what if, as suggested above, they are rendered inoperative by bugs?

Speaking for myself, I can say with certainty that I am not eager to throw away the 10s of thousands of lines of functional code I have spent years working on, unable to even retain the concepts in that code. Furthermore, I am a TradeWars player not in spite of its difficulty, but because of it. "Dumbing down" the game will make it less appealing to me. In all likelyhood, I will not make the move to v4 except in my capacity as a reporter and, perhaps, a cosysop. If the above scenario plays itself out, TradeWars will have lost a player

If there are others like me who despise these proposed changes, let them make their opinions known. For those cheering on v4: I just wanted to make sure you know what you are cheering for.

Jerry to Op USO; Website Pending
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Thursday, January 22, 2004 1:31:33 PM

It has been announced, via the usual channel, that the USO tournament that traditionally begins on Valentine's day (February 14th, for those of you who need a reminder to get up from the keyboard and go buy your girlfriend/fiancee/wife a gift) will be hosted by the former administrator of the Coastgames TWGS, Jerry. A website for the tournament should be up soon.

The USO tournament was originally created by Bad Girl. Last year's USO was hosted instead by Silver Dragon, the last game he ever ran on the Hardcoded system. It is not entirely without irony that the two people who were slated to be hosts for 2004 are, in actuality, "retired."

USO 2003 was our first corporate game, and this year's USO marks the 1 year anniversary of the existence of Fugitives From Fate. Expect to see us in this year's tournament.

Fugitives Man Stations For League Game
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Thursday, January 15, 2004 2:14:40 PM

Fugitives From Fate has embarked on yet another attempt to rule the galaxy-at-large... or at least win a game. This time its in the Killer Instinct game at Cherokee's server. For the occasion, I have even registered with the TWLeague. For more information related to the game, check out our current games page. Good luck to all participating.

The Killer Instinct edits, available at the Trader's Tavern, have been an old favorite of serious players.

TradeWars as a Spectator Sport?
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Friday, January 9, 2004 3:01:02 PM

According to EleqTrizi'T, the administrator of The Stardock, TradeWars "has been in a serious rut lately" ("I'm on the TWLeague Board", 1/5/04). Participation in the Major Tournaments has declined sharply over the past few years, and experienced server operators, teachers, and even news reporters are leaving at an alarming rate. While it is only natural for people to retire, TradeWars is experiencing a Big Crunch because, in some cases, new members are not filling the vacuum left by the departed old. It is clear that something needs to be done to increase the popularity of TradeWars, and I have my own idea to contribute.

TradeWars games mean very little to nonparticipants, and it is hard to get a person involved in TradeWars or any other game unless they have the chance to see what it is and how it is played. There are certainly sites with information, and, for people interested in combat, there are sites with capfiles. But these sites mean very little to someone not involved in TradeWars. What is needed is a medium where people can be exposed to the game easily, without having to actually play one. It would also help to have something meaningful for newer players to compete for.

To improve the popularity of TradeWars, why not borrow a concept from regular sports games: spectators. Yes, I am suggesting that TradeWars be made into a spectator sport. Now, there are a myriad number of problems with implementing this. I will address the most obvious first.

TradeWars games cannot be broadcast live, in real-time, since there would be no way for teams to keep secrets from each other. TradeWars games depend on some things being kept secret: SubSpace channels and Private Messages, base and player locations, and even, to some extent, what each team is doing at any given time. Even a "censored" live broadcast would be far too great of an espionage tool for players, and there is no way to effectively distinguish a player from a nonplayer. Thus, games must be archived for later rebroadcasting.

Upwards of 80%-90% of any given game is mind-numbingly boring, consisting of routine and unremarkable actions. Who would want to sit through all of that? To create an effective "broadcast" of a TradeWars game, someone would have to edit it down to a series of encounters between teams (kills, invasions, etc). The finished product would closely resemble capfiles, except that they would be streamed at the speed at which they were originally sent (preserving the sense of time for the viewers). Viewers would select which files they wanted to view, and from which perspective(s). It would certainly be interesting to view an invasion from both the invader's and the invadee's viewpoints simultaneously.

Finally, we come to the problems of the implementation of the recording/broadcasting system itself. The recording program would have to either act as a proxy between the user and the TWGS (with the necessary IP address/username logging), use the Administrator's "Spy on Node" function for all players, or use a packet sniffer such as tcpflow to obtain the session data. All data coming from the server (with ansi codes) would have to be recorded to disk and preserved for at least 24-48 hours to allow the "interesting" portions to be extracted. Delays between packets must be represented in these files by a system of timecodes in order to allow the synchronized streaming of multiple sessions (so that multiple perspectives don't look like a bad Japanese movie). The broadcasting component would be even more complex, using a web-based interface to allow viewers to select files, perspectives, and commentaries, then opening a telnet server and sending the requested session file(s) at their original speed. As you can see, this would require a significant amount of programming in a low-overhead, multithreaded, language such as Objective C.

There are other problems, such as getting players to consent to session recording and possibly having parts their session posted publicly, but overall I think this would be a very interesting system to implement. When we consider the people who have become sports players, even on a casual basis, by simple exposure to the sport, the usefulness of my proposal becomes clear. A system that would allow TradeWars to become a spectator sport could very possibly increase the exposure of the game and, as a result, participation in it as well.

Game: Win/Loss Ratio Has Not Improved
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Friday, January 9, 2004 12:38:15 AM

Fugitives From Fate failed to defeat <<Doctor Who>> and his team at our most recent corporate game. This loss adds yet another 2nd rank to our games listing, and not a single win as of yet. Despite this frustrating slump, we will probably have a team assembled for USO 2004.

Our loss can be attributed to bad strategy and a lack of familiarity with the edits. There is really not much else to say except, as usual, that we shall return to annoy everyone once again.

TWLeague Implements Changes
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Friday, January 2, 2004 6:18:06 PM

Following a brief discussion on (where else but) TWGS.org, the league board has rapidly implemented some changes to the TWLeague. The changes include the addition of EleqTrizi'T as a board member, the removal of the 2 games/year server limit, and the elimination of the much-abused 7 day signup window.

One of the more intriguing suggestions posted to TWGS.org is the possibility of developing an automated tallying program to collect player stats (for eventual submission to the League). I support this proposal, but I would like to caution that any such program (and all updates) must be distributed as open source. This will allow auditing and prevent undue influence with the ratings system (unlike these guys). The League Board should certify any such program used for League stats collection.

The League has been struggling for some time to increase the number of League games. According to their website, there are a total of 5 games in progress at this point in time, although only 2 of them are on servers that I have played on and hold in high regard. The top turnout for any one game was 23 members, far above the mean average of 9.8. Despite these improvements, there have been no League games scheduled for future play at this time. In my opinion, the League still has a ways to go before it can be considered fully operational.

Fugitives Begins Corporate Game
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Wednesday, December 31, 2003 1:30:56 AM

Fugitives From Fate kicked off its first corporate game for nearly 3 months today at Vader's server, Black Sun. Father Cajone, Zep, myself and others face a team whose members include <<Doctor Who>> and Bone Collector, another Fugitives member. With Mega Robs and Mega Colos, this game promises to be a Mega Fight. Future updates will be posted as information (and capfiles) become available.

Season's Greetings from Fugitives
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Wednesday, December 24, 2003 5:07:05 PM

In the name of the holiday spirit of giving, I have a present for everyone. Open it up and enjoy.

'Lucifer' Hacks Stardock Accounts!
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Tuesday, December 16, 2003 4:32:48 PM

As posted a short time ago by EleqTrizi'T, the administrator of The Stardock, a user has gained access to several player accounts in Game R (Red Alert). Full log files have been posted to the site. Droth, Animal, nudo, KilRoy, rouge, Rudy, Kurtz, Artbat, firoso, and Shyenkur were all CBY'd by the same IP address: Many corps were affected by the hack.

Eleq has performed a log match. Stardock user Lucifer, who was authenticated via password during an access to the website, matches the IP address reported as the origination of the CBY attack ( The connection itself has been traced to the Cox.net cable provider somewhere in Atlanta, Georgia (ARIN). Lucifer's recent posts indicate that he was among those to ask Eleq to run the Red Alert edits. Lucifer also CBY'd during the attack, but he reentered the game after maintenance had ran. What motivated Lucifer, who contributed money to The Stardock several years ago, to attack the server remains a mystery. You can always ask him, however.

One further question remains: How did Lucifer obtain the passwords to CBY all those players? With the admin port located safely behind a firewall and only accessible via SSH, TEDIT access can be ruled out. In an attempt to obtain more information concerning the attack, I connected to the server and started a player account in Game R. I found, much to my surprise, that password authentication for players was disabled. Users were not prompted for a password when joining the game and, while they could set one via cn8, it would not be used for authentication. Lucifer didn't obtain any passwords-- he didn't need them.

This breach of security is understandable, however. The Red Alert edits were created for the original Stardock BBS system. Password authentication was provided by the BBS front-end, and the TWGS was accessible only via a bbs-relayed "rlogin" connection. Configuring users to have a separate password for their TWGS games would be redundant. However, The Stardock is now a pure TWGS environment and no longer runs behind a BBS. When EleqTrizi'T loaded the edits via a .TWA file, which he had every right to believe would function correctly, the "Password" setting (General Editor 2, Option <]>) was overwritten. EleqTrizi'T would not have thought to check the flag before opening the game.

To prevent this mishap from occurring in the future, it is probably a good idea that password authentication be made a Global setting (affecting all games) and not overwriteable by a .TWA file.

Update: Tuesday, December 16, 2003 11:17:32 PM

New information has become available regarding the hack attack. Animal, one of the players affected by the CBY, has stated that he was prompted for and successfully set a password. On examination of TEDIT, however, Eleq found that passwords were indeed disabled. It is possible that the game files simply became corrupt.

TW History: Error 404
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Friday, December 12, 2003 4:56:32 PM

Given all the articles I have written on the players and sysops who have left the game recently, I thought it might be a good idea to compare the number of current TW players with the number of past TW players. Doing so, I thought, would give me a good idea of what may happen to TradeWars as a game in the future. I decided that the "major tournaments" would be a good starting point as (generally speaking) only the most serious players participate. At this point, the discerning reader will note the title of this article and ask what went wrong.

I quickly hit a wall after searching for information about USO 2000: A google search produced only 8 unique results. Space Ghost's site, which was among them, points to the Dragon's Keep website, but the specified USO page produces a 404 error. After a few more successive attempts to locate this information, I sat down to write this article.

Where does TradeWars information go when its contributor decides to take a hike? If it's posted to a forum managed by someone else or placed on a server for mirroring, then it is preserved. But a lot of our information and history is tied up in personal websites, such as this one, and if the creator of such a page decides to press the Delete button then there's nothing we can do about it. The information is gone, lost, or simply relegated to the memories of various players, which can be unreliable at best. What is even more discouraging is the short lifetime of such pages-- information from a mere 3 years ago has been lost. This, of course, naturally leads me to questions about what will happen to all of the information on the Fugitives From Fate site in three years.

I would like to propose that someone with the time, skills, and computational resources open an archival page that will preserve (without discrimination) all TradeWars-related pages submitted to it. Using search engine "robot" programs, TradeWars pages could be constantly indexed for searching and cached. This will not only improve the accessibility of TradeWars-related sites, but it will also ensure that valuable information is preserved indefinitely. The page could also serve as a news aggregator, keeping people current on recent events from a diverse selection of sources. My appeal to site developers is this: Don't let that page die!

Regardless of what happens with my archival ideas, I would like to promise my readers that I will do my best to arrange for storage space and hosting for this website if or when the need arises.

Traitor Leaving... Again
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Thursday, December 4, 2003 8:11:58 PM

After a brief return from his voluntary CBY, Traitor has once again decided to give up TradeWars. He writes,

I'm keeping my website up for now, but unless something comes out of EIS to peak [sic] my interest in TW...It'll probably come down sometime next year (TWGS.org #21457).

Traitor's website was recently voted Best Informational Website in last year's TW Awards. It is fortunate that Traitor is arranging for a mirror server in his absence-- such a valuable collection of information should not just be deleted.

This is not the first time Traitor has left, and it may not be the last.

Coastgames TWGS Goes Dark
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Wednesday, December 3, 2003 10:22:04 PM

Sadly, the TW Community has seen yet another server closing. Jerry has announced his intentions to take down the Coastgames TWGS [telnet link]. Jerry has released the following statement concerning the shutdown:

I no longer have the desire or ambition to run a tradewars server and if I keep it going the way it is I will only anger people and make myself feel worse due to not being able to dedicate myself to it. (Coastgames).

Recently, Coastgames served as the nearly flawless host for HHT 2003. Before the game even started, however, Jerry was considering closing the server after he became the center of a TWGS.org flamewar (previously covered here). Whether or not Prestone's actions are the cause of the shutdown remains unknown, but Silver Dragon, the former administrator of the hardcoded server, closed his server due to a TWGS.org flamewar that occured before USO. I would like to appeal to all T-Warriors to show a little respect, understanding and, most of all, to be nice to the people who give us their time, money, and bandwidth.

TWLeague Back In Business?
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Wednesday, November 26, 2003 11:53:40 PM

Following up on an earlier post, it seems that there is a renewed interest in the TWLeague. TimboRulz (Blue Adept) and River Rat have both elected to open League games on their respective servers. The presence of games to play does not imply that people will actually play them, however. River Rat's game, which opens in 8 days, has only 12 league registrations so far. This is less than 5% of the total League membership. Furthermore, none of the League's top ten have registered for this game.

Despite the bleak turnout, there is still plenty of time left for additional registrations, and the mere existence of League games is a significant improvement from its previous condition. It is certainly possible that the League has been saved from oblivion. Further updates on this story will be posted as information becomes available.

Legal Duping in CK's Dupe Challenge
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Monday, November 17, 2003 7:23:16 PM

Save yourself... literally. Cherokee is running a rather unusual and rarely attempted variation of the no duping rule by allowing 2 game characters per 1 "real life" person in a game aptly titled Cherokee's Dupe Challenge. The ships and planets will be based on the veritable Epoch edits. Another unusual aspect of this game is that fifteen different L4 planets loaded with ore and colos (and quasars!) will be hidden throughout the game, and whoever captures the most of them will have a definite advantage. Those of you interested in something new should head over to the registration page before time runs out: Only 30 people will be allowed to register.

Editorial: A Statement from Timberwolf
Editorial Author: Timberwolf
Posted By: Cbs228
Posted: Wednesday, November 12, 2003 5:02:54 PM
The views stated in this editorial do not represent the opinions of Fugitives From Fate.

I wanted to explain my reasons for taking down TWGAZETTE without warning. At first I had intended to just leave everyone wonder why I took it down. After giving it some thought and finally resolving some problems at home, I decided to issue my reason for taking down the site. I feel I owe you all that much.

I recently took out a loan to get my leaky roof fixed as well as the purchase of a new car. Paying off this loan meant some budget cutbacks at home. Every little bit counts and TWGAZETTE hosting was a causality in my cutbacks. But it's worth it to have a roof that no longer leaks as evidenced by recent rains I have been getting and also worth it to finally a reliable car to get around town to go to work, get kids at school, etc.

Time is another reason. I never had the time to update it anymore and what I do update, the news are redundant anyways. When someone posts in twgs.org of some news and I go post that exact same thing in TWGAZETTE, I thought to myself and decided, "what's the point?". Most TW news can be found in twgs.org now. Any other TW news site usually are corp news, Server news like the Stardock, or editorials. So it's a waste of my time to post news already posted on twgs.org.

So even if I didn't have to pay a cent for twgazette, I would have took it down anyways. The budget cutbacks just made it happen sooner than later. But just because it's down does not mean it will stay down. Somewhere down the road, I may eventually bring it back. But it won't happen for many months yet. I do enjoy writing and enjoy pissing people off with I write :). All my twgazette addies are no longer in use. I can be contacted at timberwolfNOSPAM@cybrzn.com with NOSPAM removed.

One last thing, congrats to Doc Who and corp for winning the express version of HHT.


HHT: Corp 1 Wins
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Friday, November 7, 2003 12:25:56 PM

7 days, 10 hours, 39 minutes and 17 seconds after it began, HHT 2003 was over. <<Doctor Who>>'s team [1] emerged victorious with their capture of Corp 2's King, defeating Kemper3's team. The only thing that was surprising to me about this victory was the sheer rapidity of it-- I expected Kemper's team to last at least another week or so. The logs of the capture are available for your perusal here.

No Plan of Battle...
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Wednesday, November 5, 2003 9:48:59 PM

From the very moment of game start, my HHT Team [5] faced an uphill battle. Everything seemed to go wrong, starting with a narrow escape from early elimination in the first 20 minutes of the game. Most of my corp lost their first day's worth of turns to Kemper's photon before the planet could be moved. There were money shortages, no-shows and people who didn't seem to know what was going on, to deal with. I was up until 2 or 3 AM that first night trying to sort things out. Mistakes were made, corners were cut, and I didn't think I was ever going to get a game map.

It has been suggested that my team faced a severe disadvantage because of the way the draft was conducted. Our severe lack of knowledgeable gridders is a clear indication that things were not entirely fair. Over the course of the game we did not find a single enemy base, despite maintaining a grid size of around 8% or so. Drafting procedures should be revised for future games. It might also be a good idea not to start with the King planets in the game and add them after a day or two. This will prevent early-game losses, such as Naz's team. I have seen similar things happen in regular Chess games.

BOTE 2003 lasted over a month before there were only two teams left, but HHT did not last even a week before this happened. I was correct in my earlier assessment that these edits would play quickly. Chess was simply not designed for a Big game.

I have delayed in posting this message because I want to deliver something very special indeed: A version of our coordination website, used by my team, that has been edited for public release. Everything appearing on this page, except for items marked as [deleted], is as it was posted during the game. It is true that no plan of battle ever survives contact with the enemy, and that is precisely what happened to us. However, it may be of use to newer players who want to understand more about the mechanics of this game.

Once again, I would like to thank everyone, my team or not my team, who participated in this game.

TWGazette Vanishes Mysteriously
Author: Cbs228
Posted: Saturday, November 1, 2003 7:49:33 PM

Less than 5 months after relocating his hosting provider, Timberwolf has inexplicably dismantled the TWGazette website. All that is visible now is a blank directory listing. Even more bewildering than the suddenness of the takedown is Timberwolf's reason for doing so. Wolf has declined to comment publicly on the site's takedown, leaving everyone wondering what his motivations are.

[All Articles Prior to November 2003]