EVE Online, the massive starship MMO, is one of the most dramatic online video games with real-life plots resembling even the most intense sci-fi dramas. Take earlier this week when one of the largest alliances (guilds) in the EVE Online universe, Circle-of-Two (CO2) was betrayed by one of their own. To make matters worse, the leader of the alliance was just banned permanently from the game for threatening the diplomat in real life.
It all began when the Judge, CO2's diplomat, robbed the alliance and stole over a trillion in-game currency units (called ISK) worth of alliance ships, modules, and pretty much anything else of value. Even worse, Judge apparently handed over the alliance's space stations to CO2's main rival alliances, TEST and Goonswarm, leaving thousands of CO2 pilots stranded. Sensing weakness, CO2's main citadel the Keepstar (a Death Star like structure) is currently under attack.
It's a pretty bad situation which is probably why CO2's leader 'gigX' threatened to cut off Judge's hands. For real.
"Whoever know[s] his real name, home address, and other details [message] me," wrote gigX in CO2's chat room. However, gigX went further and communicated with The Judge writing, "The Judge feel free to use your hands by typing here. While you still can."
The CO2 chat was at the time broadcasting on Twitch for all to see gigX's threat, including EVE Online developer CCP who promptly perma-banned gigX.
"It is my sad duty to inform you that your accounts have been permanently banned from our server for making real life threats to another players. This is a serious violation of our END USER LICENSE AGREEMENT and Terms of Service."
Penniless, leaderless, and without much of anything else it appears that CO2 might not recover from this massive betrayal and disappear. According to reports, this is all the more dramatic since according to Goonswarm leader The Mittani, The Judge was "flipped" by his agents during the annual in-person get together known as the Counsel of Interstellar Management in Iceland where a player elected government is flown out to the country each year to discuss changes to EVE Online. Like an episode of In The Loop crossed with Silicon Valley, apparently a side deal was brokered, planning this betrayal.
EVE Online is serious business as you can tell, with high stakes and big drama. While it's true that real-world money flows through EVE Online, the episode highlights just how much actual politics, both in-game and out, affects the game for literally thousands of players. Kind of like Game of Thrones' "Red Wedding", the betrayal is alread being called "Judgement Day" by EVE players. It will no doubt be written into the game's history books.